Gayle Wilson Olson October 12, 1928 - September 11, 2021

Gayle Wilson Olson passed away peacefully on September 11, 2021, at age 92.

She was born October 12, 1928, in Payson, Utah, to Lloyd H. and Eleen McClellan Wilson. Gayle grew up in Payson with her four sisters who remained her dearest friends throughout her life. Gayle attended Payson High School where she excelled as a student and in extracurricular activities including acrobatic dancing, yearbook editor, and President of the Thespian Club. She enjoyed two years as a cheerleader, “yelling my lungs out and wearing myself out at every game.” She worked at City Drug Store, and was Rodeo Day Queen and Onion Days Queen. Gayle received the prestigious Knight Scholarship to attend BYU but “romance won out” and she opted for marriage over college.

Gayle married her high school sweetheart, Darwin W. Olson, on February 5, 1947, in the Salt Lake Temple. They were happily married for 56 years. Darwin preceded her in death on February 19, 2003.

In 1957, Gayle and Darwin purchased a home in Provo which offered room for a bakery oven and a growing family. While raising 11 children, Gayle helped create wedding cakes for thousands of happy couples, never failing to deliver. She made tiny birthday cakes so parents could surprise their college students with a “happy birthday” delivery. Gayle catered pastries, bread, and desserts for local cafes, hospitals, country clubs and motels.

Gayle was a living example of tireless and caring service to her community. She was never about social status, fashion, or possessions. She only cared about service to her family and others. She taught her children by example as they delivered her homemade bread, cinnamon rolls, and meals to neighbors in need. Gayle was known to stop frequently and offer rides to BYU students. She was a faithful member of the LDS Church, serving as a Sunday School and Primary Teacher, Drama Director of Mutual, and President of the Relief Society. She and Darwin served as Ordinance Workers in the Provo and St. George LDS temples.

In her later years, Gayle enjoyed traveling with Darwin and her sisters. She commemorated their trips – from Hawaii to New York City to Canada to the Rose Bowl – by writing creative poems about their adventures. Gayle dearly loved her four sisters: Donna Peery, Helen Davis, Kay Hansen, and Linda Renzello. They were the best of friends who enjoyed playing games, attending band concerts, and going to the temple and out to lunch. Gayle passionately cheered for her beloved BYU sports teams and Jazz basketball.

Gayle’s family was her greatest joy – everything she did was for her family. Darwin and Gayle have 6 sons, 5 daughters, 49 grandchildren and 85 great grandchildren. She was particularly proud that her six sons served LDS missions and all her children were married in the temple.

She will forever be honored and cherished by her children: Barry (Bari), Dallan (Angelia), Kevin (Ellen-Anita), Paul (Luanne), Gordon (Annette), Martin (Lori), Darla (Don Lyman), Shauna (John Horn), Mary Ann (Mike Morley), Karen (Jim Gardner) and Susan (Bryant Lawrence). She is survived by three sisters, and two sisters-in-law, Erma Measom and Lynette Gardner.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to Primary Children’s Hospital.

The funeral service will be streamed live starting at 2:00 pm:

There will be a private family gathering to remember Gayle’s life. Burial will be in the Payson City Cemetery.

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  1. REPLY
    Eric Hyer says

    I can see you flying quickly into the arms of your beloved husband Darwin.

  2. REPLY
    Lena Seng says

    I am sorry for your loss of an ‘Elect Lady’. Although, I never knew Gayle personally I know her son, Dallan and wife Angelia and family who it appears personify Gayle and Darwin in so many ways. I wish that I had taken the time to go visit her and get to know her since she lived in the condo just around the corner from my mother-in-law in Payson. May you each feel the peace and comfort that the gospel brings as she moves forward with her eternal life. Love, Kenny and Lena Seng Family.

  3. REPLY
    Charles Brimhall dds says

    Gordon and family our condolences to the family What a great lady and a great legacy her and Dar left to you and all. Remember the french pastries and shoveling 100 shovelfuls to get one of those pasties or a peace of cake and her yelling “Paul-Ray” Gordon-Lee” come home! Lots of memories Her and Dar left to all of us. Thank you for them all. Chuck Brimhall and family

  4. REPLY
    Bill Naylor says

    The Naylor family sends our condolences to the Olson family. We all have great memories of the family and especially the scouting tradition that is one of best in the Church and in the world. Love to all.

    • REPLY
      Mary Jo Montague O'Neal says

      Our family appreciated your mom as our second mother when we were children in Payson. We felt her warm, nurturing love and her enthusiastic personality was an example. Thanks for sharing your mom.

    • REPLY
      Judy seegmiller says

      To all the Olson’s. Great family. Great memories

  5. REPLY
    Karla Perrin says

    Dear Darla and Don Lyman,
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family while you mourn the loss of your mother. While We didn’t know Gayle personally, we have had the pleasure of knowing and loving her granddaughter and your daughter Cami. Cami exudes some of the most beautiful attributes of your mother and loves with her whole heart. Our hearts are aching with you all. May you find peace in knowing that Gayle is feasting in the arms of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Peace be with you.
    Robert and Karla Perrin

  6. REPLY
    Judy seegmiller says

    To all the Olson’s. Great family. Great memories

  7. REPLY
    Rayne Anderson says

    Great Grandma Olson,

    Your stories of commitment to community, family, and friends (and pastries) are inspiring. I’m grateful your values of of unconditional love and empathy have been passed to the amazing family we share.

    My heart goes out to all for now and the future.

    Much Love,

  8. REPLY
    Kaylene Jones Nackos says

    We have many fond memories of Aunt Gayle, and remember what an amazing mother she was. She is really missed by many and we offer our condolences.
    With love to the family, her nieces Kaylene, Glenor, and Delaine (Jones)

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