Lebanon Reporter


July 16, 2014

Mary Rachael Gossard

Mary Rachael Gossard, 98, of Sheridan, passed away Monday, July 14, 2014, at Wellbrooke of Westfield Center for Health and Wellness, in the loving arms of her granddaughter.She was born Sept. 24, 1915, in Boone County, to Fred Edgar McDonald and Blanche (Freeman) McDonald. Mary Rachael was a member of the Class of 1933, that also had the distinction of being the very first class to graduate from the new Sheridan High School. While a student at Sheridan High School, she won numerous local and state vocal competitions. She was a featured soloist at many prestigious events. She sang at many weddings and funerals for decades. She was also an accomplished pianist.She was a graduate of the Indiana Business College in Indianapolis.Mary Rachael married Max Eugene Gossard on Dec. 7, 1934. They enjoyed 59 years of marriage before he passed away on Jan. 3, 1994. They had one child, a son, Max Eugene Gossard Jr., born on Sept. 4, 1935. He passed away on Dec 23, 2006.She was an 87-year member of the Sheridan First United Methodist Church, where she sang in the choir for over 50 years. She also was a member of the Sheridan Order of the Eastern Star #226, where she was worthy matron in 1950. She was a founding and 80-year member of the G and E Club. She enjoyed hosting a euchre club for her and her husband’s friends for over 50 years. She was a member of the Telephone Pioneers of America, and a member of the Progress Club, where she served as secretary.Mary Rachael worked for Weaver’s Department Store in Sheridan for many years. She worked for 25 years and retired in 1978 from Western Electric in Indianapolis, where she was a layout and setup operator. She also was very proud to have completed the wiring for the very first princess telephone. She was recognized for her many years of perfect attendance.She celebrated her 98th birthday on Sept. 24, 2013.Mary Rachael was an extraordinary “made from scratch” cook and created many Gossard Family traditions. She was able to prepare her traditional and made-from-scratch foods for her final Thanksgiving dinner in 2010. Just one of her many time-honored traditions was preparing craft projects for everyone to enjoy after Thanksgiving Day dinners. Everyone would work all afternoon creating very complex craft projects that could be used for the Christmas holiday.Her talents as a cook and baker were known for generations of family and friends. Children of her G and E Club members still comment to this very day about her extraordinary cooking and baking.Mary Rachael enjoyed doing all kinds of “handwork,” as she called it. She loved sewing, net darning, needlepointing, knitting and crocheting. She often submitted her work to the Boone County Fair, where she won numerous awards and recognition throughout the years.She always said that some of the very best and most enjoyable times of her life were traveling to see her granddaughter, Julie, perform as an Indiana State University Sparkette; but more importantly, she would joke, was that she was fortunate enough to attend every one of Larry Bird’s home basketball games. She, her husband Max, son Gene, daughter-in-law Judie, and grandson Alan would even drive to Greencastle, for all of Larry Bird’s away games, just so they could watch the Indiana State basketball team at a local motel. When she was asked why she retired so young from Western Electric, Mary Rachael said she had to because she was getting too worn out from traveling to Terre Haute to all of the Indiana State home games, then to Greencastle to watch the away games and getting up to go to work and be on the road at 4 a.m.She possessed a wonderful sense of humor that was with her until the end.Mary Rachael was blessed with a lifetime of phenomenal health and was able to live in the comforts of her very own home until she was taken to the hospital on Friday afternoon, May 2, 2014.She was dearly loved and cherished. She will be especially missed by her grandson, Max Alan Gossard, and her granddaughter, Julia Kay Gossard, who lovingly created her special moniker of “Mamoo,” by which she was known forever after by her family since 1959.Mary Rachael was preceded in death by her husband, Max Eugene Gossard Sr.; her son, Max Eugene Gossard Jr.; and parents, Fred Edgar McDonald and Blanche (Freeman) McDonald. She was also preceded in death by her three siblings, Thelma Jane McDonald, John Avery McDonald and James Edward McDonald; and her Uncle Earl Avery Freeman and Aunt Eulalia Maude Freeman.She is survived by one daughter-in-law, Judith (McConnell) Gossard; one granddaughter, Julia Kay Gossard; one grandson, Max Alan (Susan) Gossard; and two great-grandsons, Grant Alan Gossard and Garrett Matthew Gossard, all of Sheridan; two nephews, Dr. John Earl (Marge) McDonald of San Clemente, Calif., and James (Jane) Turner McDonald of Cape Cod, Mass; one niece, Susan (Lem) Skidmore of Cape Cod; and several great-nieces and great-nephews.Calling will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Thursday, July 17, at Kercheval Funeral Home, 306 E. 10th St., Sheridan. Funeral services will follow at 3 p.m. at the funeral home, with the Reverend Carole Fritz officiating. Interment will be at Crown View Cemetery in Sheridan.In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Max E. Gossard Jr. Scholarship Fund, c/o The Farmer’s Bank, 957 S. White Ave., Sheridan, IN 46069.

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