Mary Lou Chalberg Memorial Scholarship
Mary Lou Chalberg passed away on July 13, 2011 after a brief but valiant battle with Leukemia. She was born on December 27, 1939, in Centralia, Washington, the daughter of Pearley and Mabel Duncan. She was raised in Centralia, graduated from Centralia High School and earned an AA degree from Centralia Community College. Mary Lou married her high school sweetheart Vernon Chalberg on September 20, 1959, and they moved to Montesano in 1962. She worked as a preschool teacher for several years and also worked as a bookkeeper with the Olympic Area Agency on Aging. She retired in 2007 and was able to spend precious time with family and friends.
Mary Lou came from a pioneer family that was among the first to settle in the Chehalis area. She was proud of her Scandinavian heritage and the family’s pioneering spirit. She was an active member of the Daughters of the Pioneers and also served a number of years as a Girl Scout Leader in Montesano. Mary Lou was a devoted musician and lifelong singer. She sang in various high school choices and in her church choir nearly all of her life. She also played piano and organ and occasionally played for church services. Committed to her faith, she was a diligent volunteer in her church. She served many years on various committees and held elected positions in her local Lutheran church on a number of occasions. She also volunteered as a bookkeeper and treasurer for organizations such as Thrivent Financial and Lutheran Brotherhood.
Mary Lou loved hot air balloons, reading, and gardening and traveling; she felt blessed to be able to visit over 30 states and 22 countries including trips to Russia, Australia, New Zealand, and various countries in Europe and Scandinavia.
Mary Lou is remembered as a wonderful servant with a huge, nearly always present smile. Her family was her first priority and she continuously put everyone else’s needs ahead of her own. She could be found volunteering in support of the Montesano High School band, choir and drama programs in support of her children, grandchildren, and many other kids for whom there was no connection other than a need.
Mary Lou’s family has established this scholarship; it is open to all applicants who satisfy the general eligibility requirements of the Scholarship Program.