Funeral services for Pearl Bybee Buell a 91 year old lifetime Johnson County Pioneer and outstanding pillar of the community, who passed away quietly, Wednesday at the Johnson County Health Care, surrounded by her family, will be held Wednesday January 23, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. from the Adams Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Dr. Bob Miller officiating. Burial will be in Willow Grove Cemetery with graveside services to follow the funeral. There will be a reception following the services at the Buffalo Senior Center.
The family has requested in lieu of flowers donations be made to the Buffalo Senior Center or Susie Bowling Lawrence Hospice in care of the Adams Funeral Home. A special Thank you to our sister Sandy for all her special Care of mom, and to the Johnson County Health Care, and Hospice for the care they gave Pearl in her last days.
Pearl R. (Bybee) Buell was born on August 4, 1921 in southern Johnson County, Wyoming, the youngest of eight children of Thomas Robert and Lela Belle (Cowan) Bybee. Pearl grew up in Southern Johnson County, beginning her education at the Christensen school, attending junior high school in Kaycee and graduating from Johnson County High School in 1938.
Pearl married Charles E. Buell on December 23, 1939. Charles and Pearl held several jobs. They lived on the Glen Haven Ranch working for Charles’ parents Miles and Helen Buell until 1940 when they went to work for the United States forest Service living in a tent at Muddy Guard Ranger station and also in the Hunter Mesa Lookout Tower. They also worked for Roy Redhair at the Kearney Flour Mill, living in the old Kearney Community hall. They returned to the Glen Haven Ranch when World War II broke out in 1941.
In 1945 Charles and Pearl started C.E. Buell Trucking which they operated for 50 years. Charles drove the trucks and Pearl kept the books. They moved to Buffalo in 1947, eventually living on Brock Street. In 1984 they established the Family Steak House Restaurant in Buffalo. Pearl’s love of service to others was instilled as one of her fondest memories of the restaurant.
A fine seamstress, Pearl made clothing for herself and her family. She was a “stay at home Mom”, raising a large garden and canning the rewards, and teaching her girls how to can and sew. Pearl took care of her mother and father in her home after they were unable to care for themselves. This may explain her understanding and devotion to the love and care she had given to the senior citizens of Johnson County.
Pearl was an active member of the Johnson County Homemakers for 65 years. Pearl was named the “Outstanding Johnson County Homemaker in 1990. She served as the Johnson County Homemakers Council President and Treasurer, Chairman of the Food Extravaganza, helped decorate the fair booths, collected can tabs for a defibrillator for the Johnson County Memorial Hospital and for the Shriner’s Hospital, she furnished cakes and cookies and helped decorate the nursing home. For 40 years the Buell’s provided a place for the 4-H and FFA members to keep their livestock at no charge.
The Grange was a central force in the lives of Charles and Pearl. Joining in 1940, Pearl held most of the offices in the local, Pomona and State Granges, including Chaplin, conducting memorial services. She was Master (president) of the State Grange from 1995-1999.
Pearl’s community involvement and activities did not end there, as a Red Cross nurses’ aide, Pearl worked at the Johnson County Memorial Hospital and was the first person to hold her first grandchild in 1959. Her involvement in many community organizations included election clerk, PTA, 4-H leader, superintendent of the Culinary division at the fair, cub Scout den mother, treasurer for Sweet Adeline’s, served on the committee for the Buffalo Diamond Jubilee Celebration in 1959 , was co-chairman for the Johnson County Centennial Celebration in 1979. In 1972 the Business and Professional women of Buffalo honored Pearl as the “Outstanding Woman of the year”. Pearl’s community involvement and activities did not end there, as a Red Cross nurses’ aide, Pearl worked at the Johnson County Memorial Hospital and was the first person to hold her first grandchild in 1959. Her involvement in many community organizations included election clerk, PTA, 4-H leader, superintendent of the Culinary division at the fair, cub Scout den mother, treasurer for Sweet Adeline’s, served on the committee for the Buffalo Diamond Jubilee Celebration in 1959 , was co-chairman for the Johnson County Centennial Celebration in 1979. In 1972 the Business and Professional women of Buffalo honored Pearl as the “Outstanding Woman of the year”.
Recognizing the nutritional needs of area seniors and their inability to meet those needs, the Klondike-Piney Grange started the meals on Wheels Program in 1965. Pearl was an active force in organizing the program combining the efforts or the Grange, the Johnson County Hospital and the homemakers clubs. The interest Pearl exhibited in the seniors needs did not go unnoticed. In 1965 she was asked to serve on the Board of Directors of the Wyoming Area Agency on Aging. After serving on the board for five years, she was hired as the Director of the Buffalo Senior Citizens program. Pearl wrote a grant for nursing and transportation funding. As the needs of local senior citizens increased, Pearl approached the City of Buffalo for assistance in acquiring some land and helped to build a Senior Citizens Center. Pearl wrote a grant that started the Senior Center, and the Johnson County YMCA. Meals were cooked and served at the facility, and for those who could not make it to the center, meals were delivered. Pearl was the first director of the Senior Citizens Center.
Pearl is survived by Sandra Buell Leis, Robert (Butch) Buell and Sharon Knudsvig, all of Buffalo, Jeannie Buell Fitch and her husband Buck of Riggins, Idaho, Charles E. Buell Jr. (Chuck) and his wife Linda, Bonnie Buell Klasinski and her husband John of Buffalo; Thirteen grandchildren, twenty-seven great-grandchildren and eleven great-great-grandchildren, and her many friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband Charles Buell, her parents, three brothers, four sisters and one son-in-law Bill Leis.
Pearl said “My greatest accomplishment was raising my children and watching my grand-children, great grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren grow.”