September 20, 1913 - July 8, 2009
Alva Margaret Moen Humphreys September 20, 1913 - July 8, 2009 SALEM - After a very short struggle with pulmonary hypertension, Alva Humphreys was called home to the Lord on July 8, 2009. Her home going was very quiet and peaceful as a cd of her own pipe organ performances was playing. Born and raised in Seattle, Washington to Ole and Elin Moen, Alva attended Franklin High School and the University of Washington. Starting at age 8, she studied piano, and then began pipe organ when she was 13, studying under Edwin James Fairborn, organist and chorale director from Yorkminster Cathedral, York, England. At age 18, Alva performed her first pipe organ concert on a Reuter pipe organ at St. Clements Episcopal Church in Seattle, Washington. She received critical acclaim in The Seattle Times as well as other music reviews for playing a very interesting concert, being recognized as well equipped in both manuals and pedals with excellent technique. Alva served as church pipe organist at St. Clements Episcopal, followed by First Baptist, and Capital Hill Methodist. She became choir director and pipe organist at Queen Anne Baptist and directed John Steiner's Crucifixion. In addition to playing for many services and weddings, Alva performed many recitals. Alva married Walter S. Humphreys in 1934 and they were together 64 years until Walter's passing in 1998. Walter was a choir boy in a large cathedral in England and throughout their lives together, they shared their love of music and the arts. In 1942, both Walter and Alva heard the Good News of Christ's redemption freely offered to all who would receive, and they both personally accepted Jesus Christ's free gift of salvation. Shortly thereafter, they began attending Dunlap Baptist Church in the Rainier Valley and Alva hosted the Macedonian Bible Class. During this time, their daughter, Jean Carol fell suddenly and tragically ill to encephalitis. For the following eight years, Alva did not play or touch the pipe organ or piano, and dedicated her life to the care of her invalid daughter who was in a spastic, paralyzed, crippled, and convulsive condition. In 1949, Walter and Alva moved from Seattle to Sumas, Washington, on the border with Canada, and in 1952, Jean Carol passed away. After, Alva's brother-in-law, Arthur J. Humphreys, urged her to return to music. She was asked to teach piano lessons, which was soon followed by being requested to play a dedicatory organ concert at Everson Presbyterian Church. Churches in the Lynden area asked her to play pipe organ concerts as well, and to give individual lessons. Alva continued her study of pipe organ under Dr. David Schaub at Western Washington University and music theory with Dr. Joseph Greener at Seattle University. Alva was soon requested to teach music theory and pipe organ at Clearbrook Mennonite College in Clearbrook, British Columbia, Canada. In conjunction with the University of Toronto Royal Conservatory of Music, she prepared students for the ARTC degree. Her students consistently won awards for excellence including the highest mark in British Columbia for grade level. In 1970, she purchased a large Rodgers two manual electronic organ and continued teaching private lessons until she retired in 1992 and moved to Keizer, Oregon to be near her eldest son, Brian. Throughout her long and distinguished career, Alva has performed many recitals including for the American Guild of Organists at Central Lutheran Church in Tacoma, Washington. She has performed a wide repertoire of music ranging from J.S. Bach, to German, French, English, and contemporary composers. She has played some of the world's great pipe organs including Yorkminster and Canterbury Cathedrals in England, cathedrals in Norway and Denmark, the Mormon Tabernacle pipe organ in Salt Lake City, Utah, and the same pipe organ J.S. Bach played in Luneberg, Germany. Above all else, Alva loved her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and His Word, the Holy Bible, remaining faithful through the difficult as well as good times. She deeply loved her husband of 64 years, her children, family, friends, and cherished spending time together with each and every one. From her youngest years and through all her life, Alva had a passion for hiking in the mountains, especially high alpine trails at Mt. Rainier and Mt. Baker, the most recent hike completed at Paradise, Mt. Rainier just a few days before her 94th birthday. Additionally, she enjoyed travel especially to visit relatives in Norway and Sweden. At home, Alva enjoyed gardening, growing many plants as well as organic vegetables. Alva was preceded in death by her daughter, Jean Carol; husband, Walter; brother, Alfred Moen; and is survived by her sons, Brian and Evan of Keizer, Oregon; Stan of Lynden, Washington; granddaughters, Karen and Heather; grandson, Curtis; and three great-grandchildren, Lauren, Ryan, and Andrew. Graveside service will be at 2 p.m. on Monday, July 13 at Restlawn Memory Gardens, 201 Oak Grove Rd. N.W. A Celebration of Life Memorial will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 18 at Keizer Church of Christ, 5405 Ridge Dr. N.E., located near Keizer Little League Park. Directions are available at www.keizercoc.org.
Alva Margaret Moen Humphreys September 20, 1913 - July 8, 2009 SALEM - After a very short struggle with pulmonary hypertension, Alva Humphreys was called home to the Lord on July 8, 2009. Her home going was very quiet and peaceful as a cd of... View Obituary & Service Information
Obituary & Service
Alva Margaret Moen Humphreys September 20, 1913 - July 8, 2009...View More
Flowers & Gifts
Send flowers to the Humphreys family.Send Flowers