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Muriel G. (Gifford) Secrist

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Memories & Candles

“Hi Mom, Just wanted you to know that I am always thinking of you and that I love you with all my heart. At least this year, Dad is now with you. ...Read More »
1 of 9 | Posted by: Barbara Perlongo - Baldwin, NY

“Hiya Gigi,I miss you so much. But I still carry you around with me. No, really. I carry the laminated card I got at your memorial. You've never left...Read More »
2 of 9 | Posted by: Michael Hopewell - New York, NY

“Grammy, I miss you, but I feel you with me each and every day. Whenever I find myself unsure of what to do, I feel your presence, guidance and love....Read More »
3 of 9 | Posted by: Robert Franz - Indianapolis, IN

“Mom, I miss you so very much. My heart aches because I cannot put my arms around you. I know you are always watching over me and guiding me. Most...Read More »
4 of 9 | Posted by: Barbara Perlongo - Baldwin, NY

“Today is 1 yr since my mom, a beautiful loving woman left my life. While I can no longer reach out to her to give her a hug or kiss and put my arms...Read More »
5 of 9 | Posted by: Barbara Perlongo - Badlwin, NY

“I'm so sorry to hear of Mickey's passing. My condolences to the whole family. May you have some comfort in knowing she loved you, and does from above...Read More »
6 of 9 | Posted by: AnnMarie - MA

“Whenever we think of Mickey we must smile, as she was always a beacon of light and joy. She showed her loving spirit to everyone she met. Our last...Read More »
7 of 9 | Posted by: Fay and Ed Schoenberger - Moraga, CA

8 of 9 | Posted by: david secrist - macedon, NY

“I was sad to hear of Mickey's passing. She had a strong, bright spirit and she will be missed. ”
9 of 9 | Posted by: Elizabeth Shaw

JULY 9, 1925 – MARCH 26, 2015
Muriel "Mickey" I. (Gifford) Secrist, age 89 of Medfield, died on Thursday, March 26, 2015. Muriel was lovingly known by those who knew her as "Mickey". She was born and raised in Parkersburg, WV by her parents, William and Dorothy Gifford, and shared much of her family life with her half-sister Norine. Mickey was a National Honor student who loved to sing, play the piano and act in high school. She was a devout Evangelical United Brethern churchgoer who was often called upon to play the church's pump organ for services.
Mickey graduated from Parkersburg HS and went on to receive her RN from St. Joseph's Hospital in Parkersburg during 1946. She worked there for two years. After marrying John Secrist on August 29, 1948 in Parkersburg, they shortly moved to Pittsburgh, PA where John got a job at the HJ Heinz Co. She continued nursing in Pittsburgh where she and John raised their first daughter, Claudia Louise ("Candy"). While there, Mickey worked nights as a night supervisor at Bellevue Hospital so that she could be home during the day for Candy. John's next job brought him to New England where he first worked for the William Underwood Company and then for the US Army Labs at Natick. After moving to Needham in 1960, Mickey would continue her nighttime nursing career at the former Glover Memorial Hospital in Needham (now Beth Israel Deaconess), this time raising her second daughter, Barbara Ann while Candy finished junior and senior high school. After Mickey and John moved to Medfield in 1970, Mickey retired from nursing and soon began working in the offices of McIntyre Fayer and Thayer Insurance Co and then later for the Charles River Association for Retarded Citizens in Needham. While there she was recognized for her flair in writing warm communications from and within the association. She worked for them until she retired at the age of 70.
A born leader, Mickey never hesitated to take on leadership roles. She was a key member of the local Couples Club in Pittsburgh. There she led a Girl Scout Troop of 50 girls for several years and continued in that role in Massachusetts. She was a superlative Sunday school teacher and Choir mother in both Pittsburgh and Needham Methodist churches. She also aided Paulette's Ballet Studio as ticket and house manager for many years. A right arm to John while holding office in the Highland Glee Club, she was a record keeper and wrote communications for them. Mickey became involved in these things because her family was involved. She would see a need and always rise to the occasion to see it fulfilled.
Family and faith were intertwined in Mickey's very existence. She fully supported everything in which her husband, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren participated. She joyfully celebrated every holiday and event with family, and enjoyed playing games of all kinds. Some of the best times were over a jigsaw puzzle, cards or word games with family members. Her door was always open in times of need and her wise counsel helped family members deal with stressful times. Her mind was sharp until the very end. She would astound the doctors each time she aced a memory exam! Even though her eyesight was giving her problems, she continued to do daily crosswords and cryptograms.
Mickey was a poet, a jokester, a bird lover and loved digging in the dirt with her hands. She was all of these things and so much more. She touched so many lives in her time with us. We have been better for our time with her and will miss all that she was to us. Here's to a life well lived! We will always remember you. Now, rest in God's everlasting arms!
Muriel was the beloved wife of John L. Secrist and the devoted mother of Claudia Hopewell and husband Richard of Medfield, Barbara Perlongo and her husband Jerome of Baldwin, NY. Proud grandmother of grandchildren and great-grandchildren Jonathan Hopewell and his wife Wendy, their children Tyler and Gavin of North Attleboro, Michael Hopewell of NYC, and Robert Franz of Baldwin NY. A memorial service will be held in the Eaton Funeral Home, 1351 Highland Ave Needham on Saturday, April 18th at 11:00 AM. Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend. Visitation will be held on Saturday morning from 10 to 11 prior to the service. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the National Kidney Foundation, 85 Astor Avenue, Suite 2, Norwood MA 02062 (