Mariam Bartlett


Mariam L. Bartlett, age 87, died peacefully in her sleep at the Cheney Care Center in Cheney, Wash. June 12, after a long and full life. 

Born in Tyler, Minn. in 1926 to John and Helen Banks, Mariam shared the family home with three brothers. In 1938 the Bank’s family moved to Garfield, Wash. where Mariam spent most of her childhood years. In 1943 they moved to Cheney. 

After graduating from Cheney High School in 1944, Mariam worked as a second cook at a Blister rust camp in Northern Idaho to earn the money to attend Eastern Washington University (EWU). While at EWU, a baritone in the college choir caught her eye – and from the alto section she caught his. Mariam and Elmo L. (Bart) Bartlett were married in 1947 and a year later they began a family. 

The family lived in Latah, Wash. and Portland, Ore. where Bart held teaching jobs, before finally settling in Cheney in 1953. In addition to caring diligently for her family, Mariam actively participated in the Cheney community. She loved her family, and being a good neighbor and ready volunteer, earned her numerous friends. She donated time and creativity to the Cheney Museum, The Tilicum Club, The Cheney Garden Club (a charter member) and Cheney Community Church where she held membership for many years.

She especially enjoyed hosting foreign exchange students from EWU, who regarded her as a second mom. Mariam also supported a number of charities. She worked in the EWU Bookstore, worked at the polls as an election official, and created and sold beautiful flower arrangements. Many will remember Mariam for her award-winning yard, from church activities, and as a church pianist who delighted in sharing hymns. In all her activities and endeavors Mariam was guided by her faith in Jesus Christ and Psalm 23.

Mariam is survived by her devoted husband of 65 years, Elmo Bartlett of Cheney; brother Jack Banks (Verlyn) of Silverdale; son Robert Bartlett (Kristy) of Spokane; son David Bartlett (Valma) of Oak Harbor; daughter Kathryn Bartlett-Lynn of Rathdrum, Idaho; son Jim Bartlett (Tina) of Olympia; granddaughters Becky Fisher (Tony) of Issaquah, and Cindy Bartlett of Portland, Ore .; grandson Douglas (Kim) Bartlett of Spokane Valley; granddaughter Rachel Bardwell (Tyler) of Spokane; grandson Matthew Yeaman of Spokane and five, great-grandchildren: Coral, Alexzander, Maggie, Katie, and Sophia.

Mariam is preceded in death by her parents; and brothers Bruce Banks and Lloyd Banks. Rememberances: follow Mariam’s recipe for a happy life. Love your family, go to church, and volunteer in your community. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Special Olympics. A memorial service will be held at Cheney Funeral Chapel, 1632 W. First St. Friday, June 21 at 11 a.m., with pastor Jerry Malone officiating.


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