American Martyrs Catholic Church
624 15th Street
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
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Elaine (Gibson) McGauley

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Elaine (Gibson) McGauley Obituary

Elaine "Gibby" McGauley passed away peacefully in her Manhattan Beach home of 67 years on March 10th at age 97. With her were family members and friends, all who lovingly provided care and shared time with her during these last few years. Elaine was born in Duluth, Minnesota Jan 9, 1920 to Gladys Anderson and Ray Gibson. During WWII she moved with her parents and sister Lois to Los Angeles and worked as a telephone switchboard operator. When her sweetheart "Mac" Lawrence McGauley came home on leave from the Navy, they married at Our Lady of Loretto Catholic Church in downtown LA on March 8, 1944. When Mac returned home from the war they moved to Minneapolis so he could finish college at the University of Minnesota. They moved back to California and in 1950 bought the house on John Street in Manhattan Beach. The views of the Pacific Ocean from the sand dunes reminded them of their beloved Lake Superior back in Minnesota. Mac found a promising career in aerospace and together they raised six kids in the John Street home. They were together for 65 years until Mac's death in 2009.

In the early 50's Mac and Elaine began attending American Martyrs Church at the original Highland Avenue location. He joined the Knights of Columbus and she volunteered at the schools and in various capacities at the Church. Elaine was an early flag-bearer of the healthy lifestyle by cultivating year-round organic crops in their backyard garden beginning in the 1970s. Always one to watch her family's diet, she was not beyond allowing the kids occasional splurges on hot dogs & hamburgers, particularly on the yearly camping trips. After Larry's retirement they were able to travel to Europe, The Holy Land, Ireland, Canada, Elderhostel trips in the United States and many other places. They stayed very active until Larry's stroke in late 2007.

Before Mac's death she lovingly nursed him through several years of illness and was his constant companion. Then just a few years later Alzheimer's & ill health caught up with her as well. She was able to stay in her home until the end which was always her wish. American Martyrs friends, John Street neighbors, and of course Elaine's loving children and grandchildren, have all been a tremendous support along with those who provided daily care in recent days: Douglas, Isabel, and Carol.

Elaine is survived by 6 children; "Mikki" Graham (Randy), Pat (Robin), Dan, Melissa Wright (Chuck), Mary Beatty (Tim), Lawrence Jr, 15 grandchildren plus spouses, and 18 great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by her sister Lois, husband Lawrence, and great-grandchild, Ryder.

Funeral Mass will be celebrated at American Martyrs Church, Manhattan Beach, at 1:00 on Saturday, April 1, 2017. Interment at Riverside National Cemetery to again be with her beloved Mac will take place with the family at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to a hospice or Alzheimer's organization of choice.
Published in The Beach Reporter on Mar. 23, 2017
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