1928 - 2013
Merry Louise Norcott Ferguson of Milton-Freewater passed away Jan. 27, 2013, at her home. Memorial services will be Thursday, Jan. 31, 2013, at 11 a.m. at Christ the King Lutheran Church in Milton-Freewater with Rev. Rebecca Hendricks officiating. Private interment will be in the Milton-Freewater Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Providence St. Mary Cancer Center (Special Needs) through the Munselle-Rhodes Funeral Home, 902 S. Main, Milton-Freewater, OR 97862.
Our mother was born May 22, 1928, to Dr. and Mrs. Eddie Norcott in Nyssa, Ore. She was an only child and loved very dearly. Her childhood was spent in Nyssa, and she had many precious memories and a lot of funny stories that she would continue to tell throughout her life of those early days. My brother and I felt as though we had grown up in Nyssa also. Many friends were lifelong friends, and she continued to visit Nyssa annually for Memorial Day to catch up on neighbors and friends and to honor her parents and grandparents.
Mom lost both of her parents by her early 20s, so our family meant everything to her. Her mothering was beyond imagination. She encouraged our participation in church, and quietly held an expectation of our behavior and our citizenship in our community. To disappoint Mom was something that was rare. She always took such great pride in us. But what she didn’t say was worse than what she would say. She was a strong leader in the family. Her legacy will be the strength she instilled in her children and grandchildren.
Mother met dad (Weldon Ferguson) in LaGrande, after World War II. Mom had been at Oregon State University, but grew very homesick for Eastern Oregon. Dad had just returned from the war and they both attended Eastern Oregon College. Mother was walking across campus and saw dad driving his convertible, and she returned home to tell her mother that she had seen the man she was going to marry. And marry him
she did on Oct. 16, 1948. Mom and dad were partners in all that they did.
What mom failed to realize at that time was that she was marrying a farmer. Being a farmer’s wife was something she knew nothing about. As they gazed out over the pasture, she told dad she had never seen a “cow” that big. My grandfather and dad just looked at her, and dad told her that “cow” was a bull. Mom said dad just shook his head, and my granddad sauntered off with disbelief. When mom told this story she would laugh until she shed tears! Farming became a way of life for mom. She cried the first time dad lost a crop. She was sure they would lose everything, but she lived in the same house for 59 years. And I might mention, our house was truly a home. This was a gift mom had, and everyone felt welcome.
Mother’s faith was the foundation of her world. She faced her death with dignity and peace. She believed! She was a member of St. James Episcopal Church in Milton-Freewater, for 59 years. She was involved in the alter guild, and also served on the Bishop’s committee and multiple other committee positions.
Our mother died in her home surrounded by all who loved her.
Mr. Ferguson preceded her in death on Feb. 14, 1989.
My brother and I survive her. Michael “Mike” Edward Ferguson and Mardi Alicia Ferguson Hagerman, (Andy). She is also survived by her grandchildren, Kelley Hagerman and Michael Hagerman. She is also survived by her great-grandson, Easton Wagoner.
We give great thanks to our mother, she was a blessing to all who knew her.