Lois (Lowie) Guilbert Graves, 88, passed away peacefully of natural causes after struggling with ALS, at the home of Leslie (daughter) and John Hayes in Aptos, Calif., in the predawn hours of Sept. 26, 2013.
Lowie was born to Harold R. and Frances Marie Guilbert on Aug. 13, 1925, in Woodland, Calif. Lowie and her elder sister Mary Francis (Mowie) grew up in Davis on the UC Davis campus where their father was professor of agriculture/animal husbandry and step-mother Dean of Women. Lowie’s birth mother Frances Marie passed away when Lowie was a teenager. “Guilbert House” was donated to UC Davis by Lowie and Mowie in memory of the Guilbert Family.
Lowie was a lover of nature and nurturing and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1948. She had married W. Clark Graves, also a UC Berkeley graduate, in 1946 in Carson City, Nev. Lois and Clark raised five children, and saw the birth of nine grandchildren and many more great-grandchildren. As the family grew in the 1950s, they moved several times, eventually settling in Malibu. There, Lowie began teaching at St. Aidan’s preschool with her cousin and dear friend Adele Carter-Porter.
The family flourished in Malibu and made the most of the wonderful natural setting, the canyon, streams and beaches. Lowie instilled a love of nature and reverence for creation in all her children and those she taught in school. Lowie continued her teaching career after moving to Newport Beach in 1973 where she taught home economics and initiated an Early Childhood Education and Day Care program at Harbor High School.
Lowie eventually settled in Ketchum, Idaho, in the late 1980s to be near her eldest daughter Lynn, where area educators and activists immediately embraced her. For the next 35-plus years, Lowie remained engaged in charitable and church-related activities while providing a home away from home for many grandchildren who accepted her offer of a home in the mountains as they completed some of their education in local Wood River Valley schools.
Lowie lived a charmed and very full life, full of love and challenge. She was always quick with a lending hand and deeply engaged spiritually. She was an avid outdoorswoman, hiker, biker, swimmer and skier. Lowie was a world traveler and visited Russia (American-Soviet Peace Walk in 1987), Mexico, Europe, Africa, Australia and Southeast Asia.
Lois Guilbert Graves is survived by her children Lynn Knudson and husband, Tom; Leslie Hayes and husband, John; Stefan Graves and wife, Regina; Janet Graves; and Scott Graves. Lowie’s grandchildren were a central part of her life—she is survived by Bodhi Downer and wife, Lisa, and family; Lindsey Hayes-Koelman and husband, Onno; Tashina Brown and husband, Kawika, and family; Kyle Hayes; Darshana Nani Lane; Coco Knudson; Sangjay Smith; and Orgyen Decosse-Graves. Grandson La’akea Sky Smith passed away tragically just prior to Lowie and she is no doubt with him in a heavenly place. Lowie’s husband Clark Graves passed away in January 2005.
Memorial services will be held on Friday, Nov. 8, 2013, at St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Ketchum, Idaho. Reception/celebration of Lowie will take place at the 511 Building in Ketchum, Idaho (Leadville Avenue) following a brief committal in the St. Thomas columbarium.