Leads offered in search for Port Angeles native's blood relative

By Jeremy Schwartz
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — Mary Goyne has just two words for anyone who provided information and suggestions in the search for her biological grandmother.

“I don't know what else to say, but thank you,” Goyne said last week.

Mary Gonye created a Facebook page last month to try to find medical history on the birth mother of her mother, Kathryn Mae Goyne, a 53-year-old Port Angeles native adopted at the age of 2 who is now battling cancer.

After a Jan. 29 Peninsula Daily News article about her search, Mary Goyne said she received a number of comments and suggestions from area residents on searching for family records.

Mary Goyne also was contacted by Mary Bell, a Sequim woman who told her she was close with Kathryn Goyne's biological mother, Mary Louise Gasper Larson.

“I am so happy that I had enough information to help Katie Goyne and her daughter Mary find and know about her mother Louise,” Bell said in an interview last week.

A phone conversation between the two Marys confirmed much of what Mary Goyne had clues about: Kathryn Goyne was one of multiple Larson children, many of whom were given up for adoption at various ages.

Mary Goyne said she was able to learn through Bell that a few of her mother's biological cousins also suffered from cancer, though not of the types Kathryn Goyne is battling.

Bell said she first knew Larson in the 1970s when Bell was a first-grade teacher at the old Dry Creek Elementary School west of Port Angeles.

“That's how I met all [Larson's] kids, was being a teacher,” Bell said.

Bell described Larson, who died in 2003, as a loving, kind person who simply did not have the resources to care for her children.

“Mary Louise really did care about the kids and love them; she [would have] loved to know where they were,” Bell said.

Mary Goyne said that Bell confirmed that Kathryn Goyne has a biological half-sister named Dorothy, who now lives in Crescent City, Calif., and a biological half-brother named Jimmy who lives in the Port Angeles area.

The Goynes are planning to try to get in touch with her mother's biological siblings for a potential get-together in Okanogan, where Mary Goyne lives with her son and daughter-in-law.

“We're in the works of discussing that with siblings that are able [and] that we can meet up with,” Mary Goyne said.

Mary Goyne said her mother was a bit surprised to hear her daughter had learned so much in such a short period of time.

“She said, 'You found more information in a couple weeks than I found since I was 18,' ” Mary Goyne said.

The next goal, Mary Goyne said, is to learn more about the medical history of her mother's biological father, Oliver Harvey Walthrop, who died in 1973 at age 60.

“I'm hoping more people will see this and see that last name Walthrop, and we get information the same way we got on my mom's [mom's] side,” Mary Goyne said.

“I'm hoping there's more to come.”

Mary Goyne is asking anyone with more information to contact her through the Facebook page she created at http://tinyurl.com/PDN-FamilySearch.

________

Reporter Jeremy Schwartz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5074, or at jschwartz@
peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: February 03. 2014 6:48PM
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