April 21, 1925 ~ January 24, 2014
Georgiann Hartl, a longtime resident of Auburn, WA, passed away on January 24, 2014, at the age of 88. Born to George and Mary McLean on April 21, 1925, in orchard country near Wenatchee, she grew up in Seattle, Minneapolis and Wenatchee, where, as a teenager, she dreamed of singing like Jeanette MacDonald. She did sing in a trio with her two sisters, and as a person of strong faith, she sang in church choirs all her life, often as a soloist.
Her interest in politics, she once said, was sparked while getting her hair cut in a barbershop where the talk was all about Franklin D. Roosevelt’s returns in the 1932 election. (“I’ll never forget that feeling of excitement,” she later wrote. “It sparked my interest in history and reading about what makes this country and people tick.”)
After graduating from high school, she married her high school sweetheart, David Hartl, and raised six children. From 1965 to 1967, she served as President of the South King County chapter of the League of Women Voters, an organization in which she was active for many years.
When her first marriage ended, she returned to school to earn a degree in occupational therapy and worked for six years as the much-beloved activities director at the Caroline Kline Galland Home, a Seattle nursing care facility for Jewish seniors. She also served as a Deacon and Elder at White River Presbyterian Church in Auburn. When that church later closed, she found a home at Auburn First United Methodist Church, where she was a very active volunteer.
In 1976, she married Carl Hartl, a Boeing employee. In retirement, Georgiann and Carl were committed volunteers for Bread for the World, a Christian organization that works on behalf of the hungry, for which Georgiann was Washington State coordinator. She was also a longtime volunteer with the Auburn Respite Care Program and, until early December, was still giving her time there two days a week. Throughout her life, she lived by the idealism she expressed in her 1943 high school yearbook when, asked what her ambitions were, she wrote: “To help win this war, and after it’s won to help establish a world government in which all people may live at peace with one another.”
Georgiann was a kind, generous, open-hearted soul with a gentle sense of humor. She loved swimming, especially at Lake Chelan, which she visited almost every summer of her life.
She was preceded in death by Carl Hartl; and is survived by her children, John Hartl, Mary Johnson, Beth Vail, Paul Hartl, Priscilla Hartl and James Hartl; her grandchildren, Tobi Vail, Maggie Vail, Steven Hartl and Kaitlyn Hartl; her sisters, June Bills and Ginger Helfer; her daughters-in-law, Valerie Hartl and Loralee Hartl; her sons-in-law, Clark Johnson and Michael Upchurch; and many nephews and nieces. She will be greatly missed by all her family and friends.
A Memorial Service for her will be held at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, February 15, 2014, at Auburn First United Methodist Church, 100 N Street S.E., Auburn (253-833-3470 or www.auburnfirstumc.org). In lieu of flowers, donations in Georgiann’s name to Bread for the World or a charity of your choice are suggested.