Marlene (Wobser) LaGasse: Jan. 12, 1933 – Nov. 13, 2019



Marlene (Wobser) LaGasse, 86, happy resident of Freeland, Wash., passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday, Nov. 13.

She was born in 1933 to Marie and Otto Wobser in Rochester, N.Y., where she enjoyed growing up smelling lilacs, smiling lilacs, and having fun at Charlotte beach with her close friends who knew her as Mickey. Marlene attended West High and then secretarial school before settling down to raise her family in rural Chili, N.Y. Later on, she moved to Fairport, N.Y., where she developed more amazing friendships she would keep all her life.

Her sons want to thank her for being a source of stability and strength, for reading to them at bedtime, lovingly creating all those delicious meals, encouraging their scholastic achievement, mailing tasty CARE packages when we were away, accepting them for being who they are, and being so much fun that our friends wanted to spend time with her.

She had great love for her family, friends, neighbors, and community, as well as her pets and the myriad animals that visited her beautiful home.

Marlene was proud of her career at Abrasive-Tool Corporation as an office manager/bookkeeper/secretary where she helped to grow the company from a start-up to a multimillion-dollar corporation with satellite offices throughout Upstate N.Y.

She was also very proud of her sons, Jeffrey, an emergency medicine/trauma physician, and Jim, a biopharmaceutical research scientist.

She had a passion for reading, puzzles, travel, exploration, cooking, mysteries, history, and British TV. Marlene loved music and dancing, oceans and beaches, sunsets and laughter. Her smile and twinkling blue eyes could light up the room. We will miss her whimsical sense of humor and her beautiful laugh.

Upon retiring to her beloved home on Whidbey Island, Wash., Marlene discovered the joy of pottery and produced many wonderful and expressive pieces of art.

Her colorful gardens were a delight to the eye.

Marlene was predeceased by her parents, Otto and Marie Wobser, her sister, Ruth Kovarik (Waynesboro, Va.), and her nephew, Daniel Wobser.

She is survived by her brother, Donald Wobser (Houston, Texas); loving sons, Jeffrey (Clinton, Wash.) and James (Edmonds, Wash.); cousin, Ty (Judy) Renouf, of Tonawanda, N.Y.; and eight cherished nieces, nephews and their wonderful families; Susan (Neil), Gilmour, of Wynnewood Penn.; Christine (Brent) Folsom-Kovarik, of S. Somerville, N.J.; Teresa (Chris Pennell) Kovarik, of Mendota Heights, Minn; Mary Beth (Jay) Scheevel, of Grand Junction, Colo.; Sara (Jeff) Haas, of Charlottesville, Va.; Kathie (Gen) Goss, of Fayetteville Ga.; Peggy Armour of Indianapolis, Ind.; and Michael (Arlene) Wobser, of Rosharon, Texas.

A Celebration of Life and the spreading of her ashes on the Salish Sea will be at a time yet to be determined. In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to the Humane Society or your favorite animal welfare charity.

Family and friends are encouraged to share memories and condolences at

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