Gary Lyle Reed, 71

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 - 23:00

Gary Lyle Reed, 71, lost his life to cancer on March 18, 2014, at home in Wasilla surrounded by the people he loved.

A potluck celebration of life will take place at the American Legion #35 in Wasilla at 2 p.m. April 26.

Gary was born on July 4th, 1942, to Lyall E. Reed and Marcene M. (Morgan) Reed of Hamburg, Iowa. He lived his early years in Hamburg and Plattsmouth, Neb.

When his father returned from his service in WWII, the family moved to Midway, Iowa. When he was 16, his family moved to Hamburg, Iowa, where he graduated from Hamburg High School in l960. He later joined the Army and spent six years in active duty, with the majority of service spent in Germany.

Following discharge, he enrolled at Iowa Western Community College. He married Marcia Saville in 1968 and next attended Northwest Missouri State College in Maryville, Mo, where he received both his Bachelor of Science and Masters degree. While living in Maryville, the couple had a son, Jeffrey Lyall. The family later moved to Platsmouth, Neb., where they had a daughter, Lisa Ellen.

In1982, Gary packed up the family and hopped on the Alaska-Canada Highway. Once in Alaska, he became a teacher in the Kodiak High School system, teaching auto shop, wood shop, fisheries and small engine repair.

After 20 years of teaching, Gary retired in l997 and moved to Soldotna, Alaska, on the Kenai Peninsula. He later moved to Wasilla to be closer to his children and grandchildren.

His family said, “While living on Kodiak, Gary fulfilled many of the items on his wish list, such as becoming a boat captain, commercial fisherman, and a pilot. His love of the outdoors allowed him to take advantage of all Alaska offered. His entire family joined him in all of the activities he loved, and as a result, fishing and hunting trips became annual traditions.”

“He enjoyed fishing, hunting and making lifetime friends. In Wasilla, he found many dear friends and became a well-known member of the poker community. He enjoyed many evenings joking with friends, eating good food, and perfecting his card skills. One could always find Gary in a crowded room by looking for his signature cowboy hat. That cowboy hat, along with his laugh, rebel spirit, and cantankerousness (or adventurousness), made Gary the man so many people loved and admired.”

Gary is preceded in death by both parents, Lyall E. and Marcene M. (Morgan) Reed.

He is survived by his wife, Marcia (Saville) Reed; son, Jeffrey Reed and daughter-in-law, Heather; and two grandsons, Jared and David Reed of Eagle River. He is also survived by his daughter, Lisa E. Reed, of Wasilla; and sibling, Kathy and her husband, Mike Moody, of Hamburg, Iowa.

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