Walking On - Pearl Langley Lyon

Pearl Hughberta Langley Lyon

Feb. 20, 1912 – Nov. 29, 2017

Tribal Elder Pearl Langley Lyon was born Feb. 20, 1912, in Tillamook, Ore., to Emma Zuercher and James Langley. She was their eldest, having sisters Bernice and Ruby. She had an older half-brother, Arnold. She was baptized at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Grand Ronde and graduated from high school in St. Paul.

Pearl Lyon

On March 7, 1932, she married Harley Lyon of Lafayette in Vancouver, Wash. The happy couple lived in several communities -- McMinnville, Hillsboro and Newberg -- before settling for the last 51 years in Dayton. They had two children, Janet and Harold. Having descended from pioneer families of Tillamook, namely Zuercher and Kodad, and native/French Canadian families of LaChance and Langlois, there was always much traveling for family get-togethers. She is a great-granddaughter of Twinisha of Winakske, aka Nancy of The Dalles.

Pearl was a wonderful seamstress, making clothes for her children and grandchildren. Within her sewing cabinet is a piece of wax her father gave her from one of the shipwrecks off the Oregon coast. She always attributed her sewing abilities to her aunt, Mayme Boutin.

Harley and Pearl were farmers, raising filberts, beans, cucumbers, strawberries, apples and peaches. Pearl accompanied Harley on hunting trips and helped her son shoot his first deer. She had fished the coastal streams with her father, learning to use shot huckleberries for bait. She canned up into her 80s. Her kitchen was always busy and open to all guests. In later years, she made pies for her daughter at The Pirate’s Den. She led five generations of family on to the Reservation to identify and pick native berries, being known as ulali klootchman (berry woman). She loved to shop at the secondhand stores, always loyal to St. Vincent de Paul. She was a longtime member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles and the St. Paul Historical Society.

She worked more than 19 years at Oakwood Glen Care Center in McMinnville, also known affectionately as Pearl’s Boarding House. Her one granddaughter, one great-grandson, all but one great-granddaughter and three great-great-grandchildren followed in her footsteps for the love of nursing.

At the time of her passing, Pearl was the oldest Tribal member of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, possibly of all time, being just three months shy of 106. She is survived by her son, Harold; sister, Ruby Bigoni; niece, Dianne Locklear; nephews, Richard Bigoni, James Bigoni and Robert Nagle; grandchildren, Carol (David) Ravia, Mary (Gary) Wilson, John (Cheryle) Gentry, Michael Gentry, Cindy Gulledge and James Lyon; 16 great-grandchildren and 32 great-great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Harley; daughter, Janet; sister, Bernice; brother, Arnold “Pete”; and great-grandson, John III.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at the Tribal gym in Grand Ronde followed by interment at Evergreen Cemetery in McMinnville. A memorial dinner will be held at a later date at the Elders Activity Center in Grand Ronde.

To leave online condolences, please visit www.macyandson.com.