Byerly, Edna Mary
Edna Mary Byerly, 93, of Mount Vernon, died Friday, Nov. 16, 2012, at St. Luke’s Hospital, Cedar Rapids. Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 20, at First Presbyterian Church, Mount Vernon, by the Rev. Lori Wunder with visitation at 1 p.m. at the church, before the service. Burial at Carroll City Cemetery, Carroll, Iowa, at 2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 23.
Mary was born Dec. 8, 1918, in Lake City, Iowa, the daughter of William H. and Althea “Reenie” Lorena Davis Smith. She graduated from Carroll High School and received her BA degree in English from Cornell College, Mount Vernon, Iowa, in 1941. Her high school sweetheart, Ward Monroe Byerly, a Coe student, hitchhiked to Mount Vernon to see her, and they were married on May 7, 1944. They later moved to Oak Ridge, Tenn., where Ward died on Jan. 13, 1948.
Mary taught high school English in Iowa, Illinois and Colorado. She attended graduate school at the University of Illinois, earning a Master’s degree in Library Science in 1956. Returning to Cornell in 1960, Mary worked in the library until her retirement in 1988, when she was awarded the title of Librarian and Professor Emerita. In 2007, Mary moved to the Meth-Wick Community, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where she resided until her death.
Mary was a member of First Presbyterian Church where she was an elder and clerk of Session for many years and a member of the bell choir. She was a member of PEO, Chusei Koto Society and Ingleside Book Club.
Mary is survived by her family of friends, Kathy Ormond, Sue Lifson, the Palmer family, Carolyn, Mary, Susan, Craig (Linda); and many cousins, including Marcella Davis and George Davis.
Mary was preceded in death by her husband, Ward; and her parents.
Mary enjoyed British comedy, walking, bird watching, reading, poetry, opera and attended the Opera Elderhostel at Simpson College for many years.
Memorials can be directed to First Presbyterian Church, 301 First St. West, Mount Vernon, Iowa; and Cornell College, Mount Vernon, Iowa.
Published in The Gazette Nov. 18, 2012.