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Pearl Grace Gower

October 25, 1934 - December 16, 2021

Pearl Grace (Teller) Gower was born October 25, 1934, in Mill City, Oregon. Her parents were Alberta “Grace” (Porter) and Charles William Teller. She joined older siblings, Irene, Frank and Phyllis and was later joined by younger brothers Chuck, Ted and Larry. In about 1945, Grace and Charlie divorced and the children moved to Spokane, Washington, where they were raised primarily by their paternal grandparents, Leighton Smith Teller and Emma Pearl (“Whealy”) Teller along with aunts, Dorothy and Jessie. She and her family were active members of First Assembly Church of God throughout her growing up years. She attended Hamilton Grade School and John R. Rogers High School, graduating in 1953. During her time at Rogers, Pearl was a member of the National Honor Society, worked in the main office doing early dismissal work permits, and played the alto saxophone in the band, among other activities. After graduation, she worked at The Spokesman Review and later at Rogers High School. In 1955, a band mate from Rogers set Pearl up on a blind date with Gordon Gower. After a whirlwind courtship, they were married on August 6, 1955. They bought a house on North Cannon Street in Spokane where they established lifelong friendships with neighbors. Their first son, Ralph, was born in March of 1960. He was joined by Neal in December of 1963 and Debbie in December of 1964. The family soon needed more space and moved to property in Elk, Washington in 1968. They had a happy life there, raising the children, cows, pigs, chickens and always a large garden. Pearl was always busy taking care of her family…making their clothing, gardening, baking, canning and freezing. She also developed lasting close friendships with several special neighbors. Gordie retired from Kaiser Mead in 1983 and he and Pearl spent their retirement years working at home and about the property. They enjoyed time with their family, especially as the grandchildren arrived. They were enthusiastic yard sale-ers. They gathered up many treasures, including a multitude of stuffed animals they would wash, repair and donate to the Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery. Gordie passed away February 10, 2015, six months shy of their 60th wedding anniversary. Pearl did her best to carry on without him but missed him terribly. She moved back to Spokane to be closer to her children and was pleased to become part of the Sunrise Church of Christ family with son Neal and daughter-in-law, Jenny. In 2018 when she became less able to live alone, she moved to Riverview Terrace Retirement Community where she enjoyed comfortable days with many activities and new friendships. Pearl passed away peacefully on December 16, 2021 with her daughter, Debbie, by her side. She is missed by her children Ralph (Debbie) Gower, Neal (Jenny) Gower, and Debbie (David) Schenk, sister, Phyllis Jeremiah of Mesa, Arizona, grandchildren Joe, Adam, Josh (Hope), Sarah and Robert (Lisa) Burns, Star (Christian) Lalario, Sheila Collins, Ellie (Lee) McIntyre, Shane Collins, Cassie (Andrew) Watson and Ben Schenk, and numerous great and great-great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. She is preceded in death by her beloved husband, Gordie, parents, Grace and Charlie, and siblings Frank, Irene, Chuck, Ted and Larry. Pearl’s family is especially grateful for the loving care she received near the end of her life from the Riverview Terrace staff and the kind care of Hospice of Spokane. A memorial service will be held Saturday, January 15, 2022 at 2:00pm, at Sunrise Church of Christ, 4718 N. Ash St., Spokane, WA (masks appreciated) and live-streamed for those who can’t attend in person at (link is “join us Sunday”). Memorial donations may be made to the Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery or a charity of your choice.


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