Irma passed away suddenly on Sunday, March 18th, age 82. Born in Upland, Indiana, third born daughter of Rev. Leonard J. and Goldie A. Washmuth—her father was one of the last Methodist circuit riding preachers who held pastorates in numerous cities in Michigan.
Irma graduated from Vicksburg (Michigan) High School and then attended Bethel College in Mishawaka, Indiana where she was to meet her future husband Jack C. Longley. Irma received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Education.
Following graduation she taught elementary education in Indiana and Florida.
She married Jack Longley on June 7, 1959—their marriage was to last over 58 ½ years. During these years they resided in St. Petersburg, Florida, Portand, Oregon, Arcadia, California, San Jose, and for the past nine years at El Sombroso Oaks in Los Gatos. Jack is a retired Presbyterian minister.
Two daughters were born and she took a break from teaching for a number of years and then was requested to teach pre-school in Southern California and upon moving to San Jose in 1978 she then taught at the Clement Pre-School for 18 years before retiring.
Irma was a gifted artist who was featured in numerous art festivals in Southern California, and most recently at the Saratoga Rotary Art Show, the Almaden Valley Women’s Club Art and Wine Festival, and other events. She was a member of the Los Gatos Art Association. She painted special commissions of animals, flowers, and other subjects.
Tennis was Irma’s passion—it was not unusual for her to play tennis four a five times a week—her last game was just three days before her death.
She loved to entertain and was notorious for her awesome pies. She enjoyed preparing her pie specialties for every event possible.
She was a devoted Christian—a member of the Presbyterian Church of Los Gatos, and most recently attending the Taiwanese-American Presbyterian Church in San Jose where Jack was serving as temporary supply pastor.
She is survived by her husband, Jack; daughters Christine Cruz and Robin Longley (Joe Sunseri partner); Three grandchildren Tara Barron (Anthony), Jacqueline Zapien, and Kristopher Zapien; Three great-grandchildren, Margot Scout Barron, Roman Andres Marquez, and Jayla Noell Cecena; Sister, Norma Babcock of Jackson, Michigan; Sister-in-Law, Phyllis Lynch (Michael) of Union, Kentucky; also many cousins, nieces, and nephews.
A memorial service to celebrate the life of Irma Longley will be held at the Presbyterian Church of Los Gatos, 16575 Shannon Road in Los Gatos 95032, Saturday, March 24th, 2:00 P.M. In lieu of flowers the family has requested that donations be made to the new piano fund at the Presbyterian Church of Los Gatos.