On Monday, June 27, 2016, Gary Lewis Abercrombie or “Mr. A,” our beloved father, grandfather, teacher, FFA advisor and friend, passed away.
Gary was born on May 14, 1938 in American Falls, ID, to Arthur Lewis and Dorothy Eugene Galloway Abercrombie. He was the second of three children in a close-knit family that worked and played together.
From a young age, Gary learned the value of working hard and having fun. He worked in potato fields and processing plants during the potato harvest in Idaho and as an inspector in California. He also made hives and frames at the Nealy Honey Company. His favorite job was cleaning the local Star Theater for a dollar a day and free movies. Looking back, Gary found working summers in California with his family and later on the Nelson ranch in Idaho some of the most satisfying times of his life. Gary also spent much of his childhood days playing baseball, hunting rabbits, boxing and wrestling.
During a bookkeeping class in his junior year in high school, Sherian Nelson caught Gary’s eye. She was “pretty and smart” and Gary spent the rest of his life courting her. After high school, Gary followed Sherian to BYU. He proposed to her during their freshman year, but decided to postpone the wedding while he served an LDS mission. Trusting his brother Maril to keep a close eye on Sherian, Gary faithfully served in the New England States Mission. Shortly after he returned home from Maine, on Feb. 14, 1961, Gary and Sherian were wed. This year, Gary and Sherian celebrated 55 years of marriage. Without hesitation, Gary would tell you marrying Sherian was the happiest day of his life.
Gary studied animal science at Brigham Young University and then obtained a Master’s degree in animal nutrition at Oregon State University and conducted applied research at UC Berkley. But Gary had deep roots in the soil and fields of Bingham County, ID, and he and Sherian returned to build their life together in Sterling, ID.
Gary and Sherian raised six children together. If you met Gary, you quickly heard about Michael, Carol, Melanie, Dana, Kirsten and Neil and about his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Gary’s greatest happiness was loving and being loved by his family. That, and BYU sports.
Gary taught in Aberdeen School District for 34 years. For 20 of those years, he served as the FFA advisor. Gary was a tireless supporter of not only his six children but also his high school and FFA students. He was active in the Aberdeen community and served as president of the Aberdeen Rotary Club. Gary was also a committed member of his LDS Ward and held numerous callings including teaching Sunday School, teaching early morning Seminary, serving on the High Council and currently serving as the ward financial clerk.
Gary is survived by: his wife, Sherian Elaine Nelson Abercrombie of Sterling, ID; his children, Michael (Dee) Abercrombie of Idaho Falls, ID, Carol Buffi of West Valley, UT, Melanie Abercrombie of Anchorage, AK, Dana (Robert) Johnson of Blackfoot, ID, Kirsten Abercrombie of Murray, UT, and Neil (Mica) Abercrombie of Logan, UT; his sister, Donna Copeland of St George, UT; 11 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
He was proceeded in death by his parents; and his brother, Maril Abercrombie.
A viewing was held Friday, July 1, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Hawker Funeral Home, 132 South Shilling Avenue, Blackfoot, ID 83221. Funeral services were held Saturday, July 2, at the Lakeview LDS Church, on Highway 39 one mile west of Springfield, at 11 a.m. with a viewing beginning before the service at 9:30 a.m. at the church. Condolences may be sent to the family online at www.hawkerfuneralhome.com.
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