Edna Laughrey, who passed away Sept. 4., served the Saline Library for nearly 30 years
Book lovers in Saline are raising a glass to Edna C. Laughrey, who passed away Sept. 4 at the age of 71 at the University of Michigan Hospital.
Laughrey, who worked for decades at University of Michigan libraries, dedicated nearly 30 years of her life to the Saline District Library.
“Saline is a lonelier place today,” said Linda TerHarr, the city council member and former University of Michigan librarian who knew Laughrey through the Friends of Library.
Laughrey and her late husband, Earl, were founding members of the Friends of the Library, a group of volunteers dedicated to supporting and promoting the library. In 1995, the Laughreys developed the monthly book sales in support of the library. The sales were a hit. When the library expanded, the Laughreys volunteered in the new Corner Book Shop, which is operated by the Friends of the Library. They trained Terry Morris to take over the book sales.
““They left a legacy behind with their creation of the monthly book sales, which have now evolved into the Corner Book Shop,” said Morris. “What a very tangible gift to the book-loving community of Saline.”
Laughrey’s commitment to the library began in 1975 when she joined the Saline Area Public Library Board, according to Saline District Library director Leslee Niethammer. At the time, the library was a city department. Laughrey remained on the board until 1991, when the library expanded to serve the district. She served two years on the district library board before leaving and helping launch the Friends of the Library. While on the library board, the board hired Niethammer.
“Edna was a great librarian and a great role model for me,” Niethammer said. “I often asked her for advice on various library issues and she always had a calm and well-reasoned response. The library has benefited greatly from her vision and guidance. She will be greatly missed by all of us.”
The Laughreys were also active in the Saline-Brecon Friendship Guild, which works to promote Saline’s sister city relationship with the Welsh town of Brecon.
Friend Mary Hess said Laughrey will be missed.
“She was a real independent woman who worked very hard for the community, whether it was the library or the Saline-Brecon group or the Saline Methodist Church,” Hess said.
Laughrey, a resident at Brecon Village, had been in poor health recently.
Earl Laughgrey passed away July 20, 2009. Early Laughgrey and Edna C. Smith were married June 22 in Albion.
Arrangements are being handled by Robison-Bahnmiller Funeral Home in Saline. Cremation has taken place. A memorial has not yet been scheduled.