Our dearly beloved Audrey Irene Schroeder passed away in Providence Seaside Hospital on April 2, 2020 after a of health issues. She was born in Reno, Nevada in March of 1936 to Freida Schroeder Swofford and Harvey M. Swofford. Her mother died of series pneumonia one day later and she was raised by her grandfather, Gus Schroeder, and his two wives, Annie and Bernice, in Arago, Oregon. She is a descendant of two prominent pioneer families, the Schroeders and the Perrys, who were some of the first white people to settle in the Coquille Valley in the 1850s.
Audrey attended school in Arago, Seaside, Salem at the Oregon School for the Deaf, and graduated from Myrtle Point High School in 1955.
Many of Audrey’s adult years were spent providing caregiving and housekeeping services. She worked at King’s Garden Senior Living in Shoreline, Washington, and was a nurse’s aide in a Gearhart, Oregon rest home. She had always wanted to serve her Lord on the foreign mission field, but due to her profound hearing loss, she was unable to fulfill that desire. Instead, Audrey made North Coast Family Fellowship in Seaside, Oregon, her mission field. As a faithful member for over 50 years, she served as a volunteer, happily doing work that most people would prefer not to do. Audrey became a fixture at the church, helping in the office, in children’s ministry, maintaining the kitchen cleanliness and supplies, setting up for communion, and serving anytime she could be of help. An injury in 2018 forced her into retirement.
Audrey loved a good laugh, including laughing at herself. Audrey will always be remembered for her love of Jesus, butterflies, stuffed animals and hugs. Touch was always an important method of communication for her because of her hearing impairment. Loving others and being loved were more valuable to her than anything, and thus she had lots of friends.
Audrey is survived by cousins, Virginia and Karen Thomas of Healdsburg, CA, Mike Thomas of Happy Valley, OR, Don Fleming of Terrebonne, OR and his children, Nora Thomason of Bandon, OR, Diane Fleming and Rhonda Dixon of Bend, OR, and many special friends who cared for and looked after her, as though she were family, through the years.
Memorials in Audrey’s name may be given to the North Coast Family Fellowship Benevolence Fund at www.ncffchurch.org/give or mailed to 2245 N Wahanna Rd, Seaside, OR 97138. A memorial service at North Coast Family Fellowship will be scheduled for a later date.
For now, we are all rejoicing that Audrey is enjoying life fuller than she had ever known with the richness of sounds she had never heard.