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Fairbanks Tall Timbers Series: Shirley Gordon

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The Fairbanks Tall Timber Series honors those who have served the Fairbanks community well. Join veteran newsman Robert Hannon as he interviews Shirley Gordon. In early 1943, Shirley Lewis boarded a steamer headed for Seward, Alaska to begin a secretarial job with the Army Corp of Engineers. Onboard, she met Bill Gordon. He was also headed to Seward with his newly acquired Bachelor of Divinity degree to serve the Episcopal Church there. By July, they were married and off to Pt. Hope (where she got off the plane in high heels) to minister to the people of the Arctic Coast, who spoke little English and who, in turn, helped them survive and thrive. In 1948, Bill was ordained as bishop of the Episcopal Church of Alaska, and they moved to Fairbanks. Shirley spent the next 25 years in Fairbanks as the wife of the young "Flying Bishop". She was a gracious hostess, always with an open-door policy for overnight guests and all mealtimes, while raising their four children. Bishop Gordon retired in 1974, and they moved to Michigan. Following the death of her husband in 1994, Shirley returned to Fairbanks, where she continues to be a community treasure.

Fairbanks Tall Timbers Series: Shirley Gordon