Odessa Pearson Galda

Published 6:26 pm Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Odessa Pearson Galda died on Saturday, December 17, in Oakton, Va., one month shy of her 90th birthday. Daughter of Giles William and Aletha Morgan Pearson, of Melrose, N.C., Odet is survived by her three daughters, Virginia Galda Woelflein of Fairfax, Va., Diane Galda-Madden of Milwaukee, Wisc., and Lee Galda Pellegrini of Minneapolis, Minn.; sons-in-law Anthony Pellegrini and Andrew Woelflein; grandchildren,  Anna Pellegrini Hoyme, Adam Pellegrini, Morgan Woelflein and Henry Woelflein; sister, Mildred Pearson and many nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Frank Galda; her siblings Virginia Pearson McKinney, Giles William Pearson, Susan Pearson Barbour, Julia Pearson Daunt, Frederick Pearson, Aletha  Pearson and Doreen Pearson Janicki and son-in-law James Madden.
Odet grew up in Melrose and attended school in Saluda, where she played basketball and was salutatorian of her graduating class at Saluda High School. She left North Carolina for Washington, D.C. during World War II, where she met and married her husband. Her life as the wife of a J.C. Penney manager took her to many cities in the north, where she still managed to raise her three daughters to love the North Carolina mountains. She returned to North Carolina upon her husband’s retirement in 1978. She lived on Carolina Drive in Tryon until moving to Virginia in March of 2011 to be near her daughter, Gini. She was a member of St. Luke’s Altar Society and organized many fundraising dinners for the church; an early member of Church Women United and participant in their Thermal Belt Outreach Ministry; and worked many years as a volunteer at the St. Luke’s Thrift Shop in Tryon. She was also a member of the Western Carolina Botanical Club and, until unable to participate, enjoyed their hikes, especially at her beloved Pearson’s Falls.  She enjoyed taking courses at Isothermal Community College, especially the courses on North Carolina history and mountain lore. She was an avid Duke basketball fan. She also spent a lot of time being a wonderful mother and grandmother.
Her daughters extend their thanks to Community Health Connections in Columbus, and Sunrise Hunter Mill in Oakton, Va., Capitol Area Hospice, and Hospice of the Carolina Foothills. Memorials may be sent to Hospice of the Carolina Foothills, 130 Forest Glen Road, Columbus, NC, 28722. A memorial service will be held in the spring, Mama’s favorite time in her Carolina mountains.

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