Emily Ellen Markgraf Leslie passed January 29, 2023, at 102, the last of her generation.
She was born at Panakanic, Washington, on October 3, 1920, and moved to White Salmon at age 6 and left Klickitat County at 17 for Central Washington State College where she received her three-year Education Certificate in Art in 1941.
She considered she had three “homes”: her residences, located in Walla Walla and Pasco, Washington; Hood River and Lincoln City, Oregon; her college and university at Central Washington; and Klickitat County.
She was a skilled educator for over 40 years and taught a thousand students. She was a very good teacher who bought shoes for the White Salmon Elementary school. She retired in 1986 after earning a Master’s degree. She was an artist, gardener with a green thumb, an investor, and a philanthropist.
Emily supported The Sentinel of Goldendale for 75 years—thanks to them for current news. And thank you, Klickitat County, for the Markgraf family official records.
Her parents, five brothers, and three sisters preceded her in death, as did one daughter. She leaves four aging children, eight grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren.
Her stories of her life in and visits to Klickitat County have an ending—home again after 80 years. Emily rests in the White Salmon Cemetery near a white oak, among trees from almost 100 years ago that still grow on her father’s former property above the Klickitat River in the sheep corral.
Rest in peace, Emily. You represent the American Dream: hardscrabble farm to success through good character, education, initiative, and hard work. You are and will be missed.