After 96 beautiful years of life, Arleen Olson, passed away on June 28 at 1:15am in Keizer, Oregon. In her final days, she was surrounded by family, with her faithful and loving husband of 72 years, Keith, always by her side.
Born in Keizer, Oregon August 10, 1926 to Edna and Obed Frogley, Arleen grew up with her older sister, Zillah, on the family farm first purchased by her great grandfather in 1902. Her childhood was filled with adventures on horseback, fishing with friends, chores on the farm and a dearly loved menagerie of pets including cats, dogs, pigs, horses and goats.
Throughout life, Arleen found fulfillment and joy in hard work, especially if it was an excuse to be outside. Being outdoors was deeply important to her. As a child, she enjoyed camping with her family and following her dad down the rivers fishing. Later in life, she enjoyed playing tennis twice weekly with a group of friends, a tradition they continued for over 40 years. She also adventured with Keith all across the U.S., Canada and Mexico in their small plane after he received his pilot's license. Ever the pragmatist, Arleen also took flying lessons and even soloed so that she could land or take over in an emergency.
While at O.S.C. in Corvallis, Arleen studied geology and carried the knowledge with her for years to come, often educating her children and grandchildren about the geology around them while on camping trips and adventures. She and Keith shared their love for nature and exploration with their family through frequent getaways; fishing, snow and water skiing, camping and traveling.
Arleen’s passion for education led her to a career as a teacher and a lifetime of service as a volunteer with organizations including 4H. She also never stopped being a student of life, voraciously reading non-fiction books, with a keen interest for any story of adventure and exploration. Later in life, Arleen’s bountiful garden and the work it took to care for it would be a pillar of happiness for her, with her favorite quotation being:
“With the kiss of the sun for pardon
And the song of the birds for mirth
One is nearer God’s heart in the garden
Than any place else on earth.”
Arleen Olson will always be remembered as a loving wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother who led a life of adventure with a deep love for nature, a passion for education and an unfailing commitment to family. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Keizer Community Library and the Keizer Heritage Center are welcome.