First United Methodist Church

Gayle Shuart Gardei

Gayle Shuart Gardei, 87, passed away peacefully, on February 20, 2021 with her family by her side. Born in Suffern, NY, she was the daughter of the late George Edward and Camilla Shuart. She graduated from Davis HS, Mount Vernon, NY in 1951, received an AA from Blackburn Junior College, and earned her BS in Physical Therapy from Columbia University. As a Physical Therapist she worked primarily with children diagnosed with cerebral palsy and polio. She married in 1963 and devoted her life to caring for her family, church and community.
As a woman of strong faith, Gayle dedicated much of her life to the church and the people therein. She faithfully supported her husband’s 40+ years of ministry in the Methodist Church, serving on committees, leading Bible studies, mentoring confirmands, teaching Sunday School, guiding the youth group, and visiting shut-ins. Gayle volunteered at local nursing homes and with Seacoast Family Promise. She believed in the importance of community outreach, encouraging others to get involved, not just by providing physical support, but also by facilitating changes in the system.
Gayle took an interest in each person she met sharing her gifts of kindness, compassion, the ability to truly listen and to know each as an individual. She was present to all, knew just when to lend a hand, and always had time to share. Her warm smile and sense of humor put people at ease while her feistiness and determination gave them strength to move forward.
Nowhere did she share these gifts more than with her family who she loved deeply, whose needs she put above all else and of whom she was intensely proud. She offered up her whole self to protect them and to make certain they found their way in life.
Gayle’s greatest joy was spending time with her family. She found contentment in music, singing in the choir and listening to the songs of the birds and the peepers. She enjoyed learning, unraveling details, finding relationships between things, and doing puzzles. She found comfort in the love that only a dog can give, sharing her home with many throughout her life.
Gayle was predeceased by her husband of 57 years, William Gardei, her brother G. Peter Shuart, and her niece Karen Shuart. She is survived by her daughter Lisa Angwin (Michael) and son Christopher Gardei (Jacomijn), her grandchildren Benjamin (Mikayla), Sara, Jasper, and Lieske, and many extended family members.

Due to the pandemic, a private service will be held on Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 3pm. However, the service will be live streamed at https://my.gather.app/remember/gayle-gardei.