• Home
  • News
  • A Generous Bequest From Long-Time Member and Volunteer Mary M. Johnston

A Generous Bequest from Mary Johnston

Mary Johnston in 2011. (Photo courtesy Karen McFadden)

Mary Johnston in 2011. (Photo courtesy Karen McFadden)

This past fall, the Arboretum Foundation received a very generous bequest of more than $60,000 from the estate of Mary M. Johnston. Mary, who passed away in June, was a long-time Foundation member and volunteer. She was a dedicated member of volunteer Unit 5, the Kirkland-based Margaret Mulligan Unit, since 1977. Even when she moved to Camano Island in the late 1980s, she maintained her ties with her unit and never missed a meeting—traveling down from her home with her dear friend Renee Marquette the day before and staying overnight with another good friend and unit member Leslie Norton.

An avid gardener and wildlife observer with an encyclopedic memory of plant names, Mary created a beautiful and spacious tree-and-shrub-based garden at her home on Camano, which she famously named after her dog, Alice. Her fellow unit members remember Mary fondly as a productive and inspirational figure, always happy to share her keen knowledge of and delight in nature. Mary also wrote occasional articles for the Washington Park Arboretum Bulletin, including a delightful piece in the fall 2005 edition on watching a squirrel wrestle with some mushrooms in her garden.

“Mary personified what is so special about so many devoted Arboretum Foundation members,” says fellow Unit 5 volunteer Elizabeth Moses. “As with Leslie and Renee, who are also no longer with us, we were so fortunate to have had her friendship, knowledge, and enthusiasm.”

If you would like to leave a bequest or other gift for the Arboretum in your estate plan, please contact our development director Richard Bray at rbray@arboretumfoundation.org or 206-577-0549.