Miriam Dorothy Mehrle (nee Lewis), 98, passed away peacefully at her home in Whittier California on April 17, 2023. Born on December 1, 1924, Miriam was the daughter of Loyd and Ethel (Hough) Lewis. She was married to the late Brandon Mehrle for 66 years. She was a loving, gifted, and adventurous wife, sister, mother, aunt, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend. She will be deeply missed by all who knew her.
She grew up in Saint Louis, Missouri, attended Southeast Missouri State University, and graduated from Washington University. She was a member of Zeta Tau Alpha sorority. After her marriage she moved with her husband to Chicago Illinois where she worked at International Harvester and Northwestern University. They eventually settled in the Los Angeles area where Miriam earned a Master’s Degree and taught English in the Downey Unified School District for 25 years.
Miriam was a life-long learner and avid reader. Her love of books and focus on education led her to advocate tirelessly for support and sustained funding for the Los Angeles County libraries. She established Friends of the Library at her home branch to help ensure their continued operation. She was an accomplished pianist, enjoyed attending concerts, museums, and supported the arts. She established scholarships in memory of her late husband to support music students at Southeast Missouri State University and the University of Southern California.
Miriam was always interested in learning about other people. She traveled extensively and led high school students on summer trips to Europe. She believed the best way to learn about the world and its people is to see it first hand, visit historic sites, and experience other cultures. She also enjoyed playing bridge, square dancing, cooking, gardening, and many outdoor activities. She attended East Whittier Presbyterian Church, was active in the Women’s Circle, and supported many church missions.
Miriam is preceded in death by her husband, Brandon; her father, Loyd Lewis; her mother, Ethel Lewis; her sisters, Mary Bogard and Wilda Coffey; and her brothers, Loyd Lewis Jr, Edward Lewis, and Daniel Lewis. She is survived by her son, David Mehrle; her daughter, Dana Emery; two grandchildren, and six great grandchildren.
Memorial donations are suggested to the Brandon Mehrle Music Scholarship at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music.
Services and burial will be private.