Verna Mae (Harrison) Anderson

GLADSTONE — The sun parted the clouds May 2, 2019, just as Verna Mae (Harrison) Anderson 70, of Gladstone passed away peacefully, at home, with her loving husband Lee and sister Marilyn at her side. Her courageous battle with Myasthenia Gravis and a virulent Melanoma behind her, the journey to her “New Life” in Heaven began.

Verna was born in Escanaba on July 11, 1948, the first child of Maurice and Vivian (Mattonen) Harrison. Both parents set about the challenging work together, learning the ropes of parenthood, as well as continued management of their careers and the household.

Verna attended Escanaba schools and was looking forward to celebrating the 50th class reunion with her friends and classmates in August of this year.

She was a member of Central United Methodist Church, along with the Women’s Sunday Morning Bible Study, and the church Pasty Crew. She loved her church family and was fortified by all of the activities there, throughout each of the years from childhood to her passing.

Verna married Lee Anderson on July 13, 1974, had she lived, they would have celebrated their 45th anniversary this July. Lee was dedicated to Verna’s well being throughout those decades, but especially so during the last five years, as her principle caregiver.

Survivors along with her loving husband include: her sister, Marilyn (Tom) Trudgeon of Escanaba, mother-in-law, Marilyn Anderson of Gladstone; sisters-in-law, Judy (Mike) McCarty of Georgia and Janice Desotell of Escanaba; brother-in-law, Ron (Debbie) Anderson of Minnesota; niece, Ashley (Bryon) Pratt of Gladstone; nephews, Michael (Amy) McCarty Jr., Brian (Angela) McCarty and Stephen Anderson; aunts, many special cousins and friends including her best friend Helen Mineau. She also leaves behind her beloved cat Ariel.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Maurice and Vivian Harrison; niece, Torri Lynn Rogers; her father-in-law, George Anderson, and brother-in-law, Terry Anderson.

Verna was a very compassionate, loving person whom always asked how others were doing without regard for how she might feel. She truly was a kind and gentle soul. Verna will be dearly missed by all who knew her. In addition to treating the humans around her kindly, Verna loved all animals. She and Lee cared for a menagerie of dogs and cats over the years, loving each one. Verna was a former animal shelter volunteer, taking great joy in helping the other volunteers care for the steady stream of animals in need.

The family would like to thank all those who were with her and supported her during her final days. Our expression of gratitude to Helen Mineau for her friendship and support is beyond words.

A special thanks to OSF Hospice for the excellent care and compassion provided to Verna and her family during her final days.

We were stunned by the fast and furious spread of her Melanoma and thank all who helped during our shock and limited time.

You are free dear Verna, no more pain and suffering. You have set the standard high for the rest of us through your example of courage in the face of death. You remain in our hearts forever and we look forward to seeing you again when by God’s grace we come “home.”

The family will receive friends on Friday, May 10, from 12 to 3 p.m. at the Central United Methodist Church in Escanaba. Funeral services will be at 3 p.m. with Pastor Elise Edwardson officiating. A luncheon will be served following the services in the fellowship hall. Verna will be laid to rest in the Fernwood Cemetery in Gladstone.

The Anderson family is being assisted by the Skradski Funeral Home in Gladstone.

For additional information or to leave the family a message of condolence, go to http://www.skradskifuneralhomes.com.