Vivian Gilley

November 9, 2023
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Vivian Gilley Obituary

Vivian N. (Buchanan) Gilley

On August 15, 1922, the world became a brighter place when Vivian was born in Halfway, Oregon, to Clarence W. Buchanan and Eliza C. (Holcomb) Buchanan. She passed away peacefully at her home surrounded by loved ones on November 09, 2023.  A Traditional Funeral Service will be held on Saturday, November 18, 2023 – 1:00 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church in Halfway, Oregon.  Vault Interment will follow at the Pine Haven Cemetery.  Friends are invited to join the family for a potluck reception to be held immediately following the interment at the Halfway VFW.

Vivian grew up in Halfway on her father’s ranch on what is now known as Buchanan Lane. She started school in a one-room schoolhouse and graduated from Pine Valley Union High School in 1941. Vivian had perfect attendance and was never late, even if it meant walking five miles each way in a snowstorm. As a young girl, she helped on the family farm, played the clarinet, and ran wherever she went. Vivian loved playing baseball and dancing. She could out dance anyone and especially loved to jitterbug. She often said that she “would have rather danced than ate.” She graduated as a Licensed Registered Nurse in 1944 from St. Elizabeth Hospital in Baker, Oregon. It was there that she met her husband Art as he recovered from surgery. He fell in love with her at first sight and often told people that Vivian was the most beautiful woman he had ever met. Vivian and Art had three children and lived in Fresno California before returning to the Pine Valley in 1956. Art managed the sawmill for Ellingson Lumber Company in Halfway and Vivian played a vital role by taking over the administrative tasks and payroll. Although Vivian lived in Boise for the past 43 years, she always considered Halfway her home. Vivian was a lifelong member of the Oregon Eastern Stars, loved to crochet, embroider, and had the most beautiful handwriting. She was an avid reader; a wonderful cook and collector of Native American art. She kept a meticulous house and yard; no weed stood a chance with Vivian around. She had a special relationship with animals and made a pet out of everything. She spent many days horseback riding, fishing with Art, and caring for the people she loved. Vivian was called Aunt Buck by all her nieces and nephews, who loved her and Uncle Art tremendously. She was undoubtedly the best mom, grandma, and great grandma ever.

It is impossible to describe how loving, patient, loyal, determined, hardworking, resilient, spirited, and feisty Vivian was. She had an enviable sense of humor and would welcome anyone into her home. Vivian was respectful and would walk alongside you without controlling your direction. In the words of her great-granddaughter, she was a miracle. To know her was a gift, and how lucky are those of us who get to hold her in our hearts forever.

Vivian is survived by her son Arthur Troy Gilley (Kristen) of Arlington, VA, and daughter Charmel Kubik (Darrel) of Boise, ID. Grandchildren Christopher Gilley (Jenna), Patrick Gilley (Sarah), Sean Gilley, Becky Kent-Hager (Dale), Julie Kubik (Russ Blackhurst), David Kubik (Arrielle), and her nephew Kevin Easter.

Great grandchildren Thomas Gage Kent, John Blackhurst, Vivian Blackhurst, Brandon Gilley, and Romee Gilley. Her grandchildren and great-grandchildren gave her so much joy and were the light of her life.

She was preceded in death by her husband Art, son Clarence (Butch), Mom Eliza, Dad Clarence, brother Earl and sisters Betty and Clarine.

For those who would like to make a memorial donation in memory of Vivian, the family suggests the Pine Haven Cemetery Beautification Fund through Tami’s Pine Valley Funeral Home & Cremation Services P.O. Box 543 Halfway, Oregon 97834.  Online condolences may be shared at

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Funeral Service
November 18, 2023

1:00 PM
Pine Valley Presbyterian Church

Halfway, Oregon 97834


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