August 18, 2021


Lavone May Newell-Reim passed away at her home on Fir Island, Skagit County, surrounded by her loving family. She was the 4th of 10 children born to Charlie and Vera Stone in Galesburg, Kansas. The Stone family moved to the upper Skagit Valley in 1941 where she spent most of her childhood in a cabin located on a 40-acre stump ranch along the Skagit River, facing Sauk Mountain. After graduation from Concrete High School, Lavone married Harold Trueman and moved to the farm in Lyman where they raised their three children Marcia, Chuck, and Mary.

Lavone graduated from Skagit Valley College in 1966 and earned a BA and master’s degree from Western Washington University. She taught Art and English at Cascade Middle School in Sedro Woolley for 23 years.

In 1972 Lavone moved with her husband, Ross Newell, to a cabin and small acreage on Fir Island, where she created a garden oasis. Many design elements in the cabin-now-craftsman home are products of their exploration of Pacific Northwest mountains, rivers, and beaches. Their last adventure together was commercial salmon fishing in Alaska, where Ross passed away.

In the following years, Lavone traveled the world and enjoyed art exhibits, gardening, and operas with her friend, Johann Enderlein.

Lavone married Dick Reim in 2003. He shared her love of cooking, horticulture, art, and world travel. Through their hard work and combined vision, they perfected the garden oasis. They hosted art shows, philanthropic, community, and family events on the Fir Island property.

Lavone mastered whatever media she explored; including stained glass, jewelry, photography, ceramics, and her true passion: painting. Her paintings were shown at exhibitions in the Pacific Northwest and around the world. She has paintings in collections throughout the Northwest, Arizona, New York, Germany, New Zealand, Scotland, and Sweden. She wrote two books: Skagit Valley Fare and The Barn Shows -1987-2003.

Lavone is survived by her loving husband Dick Reim; her children Marcia Rogers (Gregg), Chuck Trueman (Norma), and Mary Carter (Sandy); her sister Judy Coffell, brother Jack Stone; and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Special thanks to Hospice Northwest for providing care; allowing Dick to fulfill her request to be at home, and with him, when she passed.

A celebration of Lavone’s life will be held in the spring. Donations in her honor may be made to Museum of Northwest Art, Skagit Symphony, Skagit Land Trust, and Skagitonians to Preserve Farmland.

Please visit to share your thoughts and memories and sign the online guest register.

Arrangements are under the care of Hawthorne Funeral Home, Mount Vernon, WA.


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