Marcia Griffith Salmela passed away April 8. She will be remembered by her family and many friends for her courage, optimism and determination to live life to its fullest despite the challenge of an early onset of the progressively deteriorating muscle condition known as Cerebellar Ataxia.
Born in 1945 in Sheridan to Donald Vernon Griffith and Louise Burley Griffith, Marcia attended elementary and high schools there. She also received her AA degree at the Sheridan College. She earned her BA in Elementary Education (1967) at the University of Wyoming, which enabled her to teach preschool at the Big Horn Elementary School.
While working as a librarian at the Wyoming State Hospital (1971-1973), Marcia met her future husband John (Bud) Salmela (who died in 1998). They moved to Evanston, where Marcia established many friendships and became a Sunday school teacher at the Calvary Baptist Church, as she had done at the First Presbyterian Church in Sheridan. In addition to her church affiliations, Marcia was a member of PEO chapters in Sheridan and Evanston and Job’s Daughters Bethel 27.
Marcia spent her last months in Salt Lake City receiving health and hospice care and was cremated there.
Marcia is survived by her siblings Bruce Griffith, Leslie Griffith Engebretson (d. David); stepchildren Steve (Marylou) Salmela of Fairbanks, Alaska, Alan (Cheryl) Salmela of Boring, Oregon, and Linda (Mike) Ness of Fairbanks, Alaska; sister-in-law Delila Michaels of Burlington; and seven grandchildren.
A memorial for Marcia is planned for 11 a.m. on April 22 at Brookdale Senior Living, 76 S. 500 East, Salt Lake City, Utah 84102. SereniCare Funeral Home of Salt Lake City has been entrusted with the arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The Marcia Griffith Salmela Scholarship fund, University of Wyoming Foundation, 222 S. 22nd St,
Laramie, WY 82070.