In Memory of




Obituary for Shari L. Gibson

POTSDAM – Shari L. Gibson, 83, a longtime resident of Hatch Road, unexpectedly passed away at her home on Thursday, September 10, 2020.

Shari was born in Oceanside, California on June 29, 1937, the daughter of the late Harry and Linda (Schneider) McElrath. After the death of her father, Harry McElrath when she was age 12, she was adopted and raised by Russell Lord. She graduated from Glendale High School in California in June 1955. She moved to Potsdam with her former husband, William Wilcox, in 1975. She attended SUNY Potsdam during her 50s, graduating with honors in 1995 with her BA in Sociology.

Shari’s primary career was as a secretary. After the birth of her daughter, she left work to become a Homemaker. She served as Girl Scout troop leader for several years, as well as President of the Potsdam Figure Skating Club. She later became the Program Director of the Canton Church and Community Program, where she worked to better the lives of those in need for over a decade. Her commitment to the community was evident in her generosity to anyone she encountered, whether she was sewing skating costumes for Ice Shows, leading girl scouts on camping adventures, or connecting clients with services and supports they needed to better their lives. Shari enjoyed cooking, trips to the Casino, sewing, and staying involved and supportive in her children’s lives. She was a devoted grandparent and, within the last 8 years, cherished the role of “second parent” to her grandson, Bennett.

Shari is survived by her son and daughter-in-law, Russell and Betsy Wilcox of Oregon; her daughter, Kathy Wilcox of Potsdam; her grandchildren, Jessica, Cale, Severina, and Bennett; and two great grandchildren.

A celebration of her life will be held at her home at 468 Hatch Road, Potsdam on Sunday, September 20 at 2:00 PM, where her family encourages you come, visit, and share a favorite memory or story of Shari.

Memorial contributions may be made in her memory to the Potsdam Humane Society.