Audra Garbarino Hamilton
August 29, 1931 - June 22, 2016
Audra Garbarino Hamilton was a lifelong Salem and Keizer resident. She grew up on her parents’ farm in the Lake Labish area, attending St. Vincent’s Catholic School and Sacred Heart Academy. She graduated from Marylhurst College. A couple of years later she married and had three daughters Cynthia, Julie and Kelly. She had an early career as a social worker for the State of Oregon, then became a full-time mom to her three girls. For several years, they lived in The Dalles, but commuted back to Salem on a near weekly basis to be near her mother, Ann. She was active as a Girl Scout leader for many years, and donated hundreds of volunteer hours to her children’s schools. Her passion for her children and family knew no limitation.
Later as her children were growing up, she returned to social work at Fairview State Hospital in Salem. She worked there at first as a social worker and later as an administrator. She was held in high regard by all, demonstrating great care and compassion for the institutionalized patients; right up to her death she was in contact with some of her former clients from Fairview, who loved her.
While working at Fairview, she met the love of her life, Chuck Farnham, and the two of them enjoyed decades of mutual interests and companionship. They enjoyed fine restaurants and fine wines, beauty in the world, travel, concerts, their dogs, and above all, family.
Audra had a green thumb that can be matched by none and her backyard reflects that fact. It is a paradise of peace and beauty, and continues to hold her essence. She was also an expert knitter, and her ability exceeded even the experts she met in the yarn shops she loved to frequent.
Audra passed away on June 22, 2016, surrounded completely by the family she cherished so. Her absence now leaves a void in their lives, yet they are comforted by the fact that her death transpired exactly as she had hoped it would, quickly and peacefully, with those who loved her at her side. She is survived by partner Charles Farnham, her daughters Cynthia Hamilton (husband John), Julie Hamilton, and Kelly O’Halogan, grandchildren Aubray Canale (husband Chris), Coe Lottis (wife Kendall), Rory Hamilton-Battenfeld, Bryce Hamilton-Battenfeld, and Thuy O’Halogan, and great grand-children Vincent, Louis and Benny Canale, as well as her beloved dog Beja.