Marilyn FRY Obituary (1927-2021) – Pullman, WA

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Marilyn JoAnn Joyce Fry, 93, of Pullman, died of age-related causes at the Gritman Memorial Hospital in Moscow, Idaho; Thursday October 21, 2021.

Marilyn was born on December 21, 1927, the first child of Joe Joyce, an Irish immigrant to Canada, who was his

Mrs.-to-Marvel Pickett in her hometown of Whitefish, Montana. The Joyces lived in the tiny but famous Skykomish, Washington (always “Sky” for Marilyn), the western entrance to the seven-mile tunnel on the Northern Pacific Railroad through Washington’s spectacular Cascade Mountain Range. Marilyn’s father was a railroad worker for a lifetime, and Marilyn’s love and knowledge of railroad life were endless. After all, even her children would travel with her on the train.

Until her death, Marilyn kept in touch with old “Sky” classmates and friends. One of the first things she insisted on when she married Richard (Dick) Fry on July 17, 1977 was that they attend the Skykomish annual vintage picnic – and of course they did! That was Dick’s first indication of how fondly Marilyn was remembered by so many old neighbors! (In a town as tiny as Sky, almost everyone was a neighbor! ”Fry learned.)

Marilyn moved to Spokane during World War II and graduated from Marycliff High School. Over the years, Marilyn lived and worked in Spokane (she was with the Pacific Northwest Bell Phone Company) and made many lifelong friends. Her very special group was the Amistad Social Club, and she continued to meet with members years after moving to Pullman.

Marilyn’s whole life has been filled with love from so many friends and family and for her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-grandchildren, so many that it would be pages here to list them. Marilyn was blessed to have six wonderful children with husband Wes Schirman: Rick (Patty), Linda Mayther (Dick),

Diane Rheaume (Joe), Jack, Mike, Greg (Debbie) and stepchildren, Patty Timothy, Jim Fry (Raylene), Kevin (Flo), Kristen Haight (Dave).

Marilyn’s last stop was in Pullman, Washington, when she married Dick Fry in 1977. They lived a full and wonderful life there. Marilyn made new friends for both of them while attending college events and town and club / friends get-togethers. (Marilyn was quick to join the Pullman Women’s Golf Club, so she enjoyed playing the old 9-hole course) (Marilyn didn’t start golfing until she was in her 40s when she took lessons from Spokane Pro Bud Drake, but she loved that Game — and “could get up in the middle of the night and hit a 5-iron, stiff!)

She also played in several bridge groups and the many, many sessions of theirs over the years

Monday-Wednesday-Friday morning coffee get-togethers with close friends (in beautiful downtown Pullman) were particularly lovely occasions.

Marilyn and Dick loved traveling together – across Washington and many other states (to see Cougar games on many occasions, of course!). They participated in the Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, Texas and two Rose Bowl games.

They made two trips to Europe; Made friends for life with multiple stays across the UK. They traveled to Australia to visit the families of six Rotary Exchange Group team members who visited Spokane during Expo ’74. In 1994 they flew to China to revisit scenes from Dick’s World War II service with the US Army Air Corp unit in Luliang, Yunnan Province, 1944-45.

Marilyn preceded her parents Joe and Marvel Joyce in death; little brother, Richard Joseph; Sister Viva “Penny” Dieringer and her husband Andy; Husbands Wes Schirman and Bob Johnson and their beloved grandson Mike Schirman Mayther.

The family would like to thank Nancy Gregory, ARNP and CDE, who have looked after Marilyn wonderfully for many years. No formal service is planned for Marilyn. A private family funeral is planned for a later date.

(At the time of this obituary, the sad news of the death of Marilyn’s 90-year-old sister, Mrs. Jacqueline C. Solomon, came on October 23rd at her Concrete, Washington home.) Online condolences can be sent to

Published by Spokesman-Review on 10/27/2021.


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