Marilou Gay

Marilou Carson Gay

1927 - 2023

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Obituary of Marilou Carson Gay

Marilou Carson Gay, age 95, longtime Iowa City resident, passed away peacefully, Thursday, April 27, 2023, at Oaknoll Retirement Center.


Marilou was born to Frank and Viola Michel Carson September 8, 1927 in Johnson County.  She graduated from University High School and attended the University of Iowa.  She married Richard A. Gay June 25, 1950 in Iowa City.


She was active as a 4-H leader and judge for many years.  She worked with Girl Scouts, was a Boy Scout den mother, and with her husband took Explorer Scouts on canoe trips to the north woods during the 70’s and 80’s.  They received many awards for their youth work.  Marilou was an early graduate of the Master Gardener Program and gave many volunteer hours in slideshows over the years.  Her work with Project GREEN dates back to the beginning, and she was on the governing board.  She was also active in Four Seasons Garden Club and the Iowa City Orchid Society.  She was a lifelong member of First Presbyterian Church.  For many years she shared her house with foreign graduate students from all over the world.  She also designed flower gardens for a local lawn care company and designed landscaping at the Johnson County Fairgrounds.


Marilou will be missed by her children Jack (Nancy), Mike (Jane), Tim (Leslie), and Julie (John) Lavely; her 11 grandchildren and their spouses and her 24 great-grandchildren.  She is also survived by her brother, John Carson.   She was preceded in death by her husband Richard in 2003, 3 brothers, a sister, and her parents.


As much as she loved flowers, she would like to be remembered by memorial gifts to her beloved Church, Johnson County 4-H, or the Johnson County Master Gardener Program.  Private family services will be held at a later date.