July 26, 2023
On July 7, 2023, long-time Lebanon resident Marilyn F. Brannon peacefully but suddenly passed away in her sleep at her home in Puyallup, Wash. at the age of 90.
Marilyn Miller was born on Dec. 18, 1932, in Albany to Grace (Bartcher) and Russell Miller. She was later adopted by her stepfather, Harvey Wellsandt. She attended schools in Albany and Silverton before graduating from North Bend High School in 1950.
She met Robert Brannon at a dance at the long-gone Cottonwood ballroom on Hwy. 20 and they were married on Feb. 22, 1951, shortly before Rob reported for duty in the Army. They raised two sons, Kevin and Chris, and a daughter, Kerry. Marilyn had a long career, mostly keeping track of other people's money at banks and in payroll and employee benefits departments. She retired from Consumers Power Cooperative in Philomath in 1990.
Marilyn was an active member of the Lebanon United Methodist Church, where she made life-long friends with several women in Women's Circle. She was an accomplished seamstress and baker who made many bridesmaid's dresses in her spare time and whose dessert recipes have been passed down through three generations. Her pickling techniques are the stuff of legend.
Many of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren called her "Grandma Pickle" from the time they could say the words. Marilyn and Rob also loved taking their travel trailer to the Oregon Coast, Wallowa Lake and many other places in the West. Marilyn especially loved going to the coast and getting a room with an ocean view when big storms were forecast – once even staying after power was knocked out and the hotel served its guests dinner from a barbeque. She traveled to Ireland where she made a good friend from Adelaide, Australia, whom she later visited there and hosted in Oregon. She also toured Italy.
Marilyn was predeceased by her husband Robert, her sister Diane and brother John Wellsandt. She is survived by her children, Kerry (Brannon) Anderson of Buckley, Wash.; Chris Brannon of Graham, Wash.; and Kevin Brannon of Spokane; two sisters, Linda Bates of Aumsville, and Becky Bowen of Las Vegas, Nev.; her brother, John Miller of Skykomish, Wash.; seven grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandson, as well as cousins, nephews and nieces.
The family held a private memorial dinner to celebrate Marilyn's life on July 23 and there will not be a formal ceremony.