Mary Lanell (Birrer) Grossmiller passed away on November 25, 2022 at the age of 91 in Milwaukie, Oregon. She was born in Yellville, Arkansas on May 19, 1931 to Wayland Warren Birrer, and Grace Wolf.
Mary graduated from Hermiston High School and attended Southern Oregon College and Oregon State University where she became a teacher. She taught High School business education for many years, did accounting and billing for Grossmiller Earthmoving and was a devoted mother to her children.
Mary lived in Yellville, Arkansas, Hermiston, Medford, Corvallis, Junction City, Eugene, and Milwaukie, Oregon.
She was married to William Hale Esselstyn (1949-1969). They had 4 sons and 1 daughter, Douglas Esselstyn (deceased 12/13/18), Clifford Dwight Esselstyn and his wife, Denise Esselstyn (Klamath Falls, Oregon), Diana Esselstyn (deceased 5/25/55), John Bradley Esselstyn (Tucson, Arizona), and Stuart Todd Esselstyn and his wife, Heidi May (Kirkland, Washington). Mary has 5 grandchildren; Chadwick Willard (formerly Esselstyn), Melissa Esselstyn, Brandon Esselstyn, Anthony Esselstyn, and Andrew Esselstyn; and 5 great-grandchildren, Ethan Huddleston, Drake Willard, Haley Willard, Tiffany Oseguera and Ashley Fosselman.
She married the love of her life, Donald Grossmiller on March 21, 1971, and gained 5 Grossmiller step-children, Nickola Pierce and her husband, Tom Pierce (Portland, OR), Kelly Grossmiller and his wife, Carol Grossmiller (Junction City, OR), Clydie King (Milwaukie, OR), Jonalyn Horsfall and her husband, Michael Horsfall (Milwaukie, OR), and Cary Grossmiller (deceased 6/20/2009) and his wife, Jami Grossmiller (Junction City, OR). Mary has 7 Grossmiller grandchildren, Tyson Pierce, Haley Horsfall, Rian Otto, Kyle Grossmiller, Brian Grossmiller, Carly Grossmiller, and Carson Grossmiller; and 3 Grossmiller great-grandchildren, Lola Pierce, Drew Otto, and Dylan Otto.
Mary was an excellent cook and seamstress and took great pride in keeping a neat and tidy home. She loved her kids and grandkids but especially the babies. She was never happier than when her house was filled with little people to care for and love on. Crafts were a big part of Mary’s life, so much so that she opened a ceramic’s studio and taught classes from her home. She was a devoted wife to Don and loved him deeply. Mary and Don got to spend 25 years being snowbirds together, traveling each winter to Mesa, Arizona where they owned a small home at Valle Del Oro Resort. They had many friends there and in the greater Eugene area. Their home was a safe and welcoming place. Mary loved the lord and she and Don were devoted members of the United Methodist Church for many years.
Mary is preceded in death by her husband, Donald Grossmiller; son, William Douglas Esselstyn; daughter, Diana Esselstyn; step-son, Cary Grossmiller; sister, Anna Flo Birrer; granddaughter, Kristy Huddleston; parents, Wayland Warren Birrer and Grace Wolf; beloved stepfather, John Schroder; and brothers, Cal Birrer and Ross Birrer.
A memorial service will be 2 p.m. Monday, January 16, 2023 at the Milwaukie Lutheran Church, 3810 SE Lake Rd, Milwaukie, Oregon.