Karen and I have joined a number of Mary Kiesau’s scenic flower identification hikes. The most memorable was a couple of years ago going out Windy Pass up off Harts Pass. By happenstance and good fortune the eight of us, who mostly did not know each other, included an astrophysicist, a physicist, two medical doctors, two lawyers, a Ph.D. psychologist, and a master’s in finance. And who was the focus of attention in this highly educated group? Mary. Mary, is this also an Indian Paintbrush? Are these two plants that look similar in the same family? Why are there so many delicate flowers in such a challenging environment?
Mary guided us along the trail with knowledge, enthusiasm, and humor. When she wasn’t certain of an answer she dug into her not insignificant backpack and searched through the reference books she had brought along. And with the spectacular sights of the many peaks in the distance, Mary gave the names the most prominent and noteworthy.
We will miss her many talents as guide, educator, organizer, photographer, and recent Master of Environmental Education. Her passing is our loss.
Mark and Karen Endresen, Winthrop