Oct. 18, 1947-Aug. 16, 2016
Beth Ann Mishko, 70, died of ALS at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer in the first hour of Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016.
Beth was born Beth Ann Gill Oct. 18, 1947, in the elevator in Mercy Hospital in Auburn, N.Y. Her family were in dairy farming as tenant farmers in five central New York counties.
She moved from Solvay, N.Y., in April 1990 to Kalifornsky Beach, Alaska, near the Kenai River, to join her husband, John Mishko. They developed a second and final home on Old East End Road, outside Homer. She continued in her nursing occupation from New York, working at the Central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna during the weeks her husband worked on the North Slope.
She is survived by her husband, John B. Mishko; son, Alex, his wife Lisa, and granddaughter Hannah; son, Bryan, his wife Holly and granddaughters Misha and Pippa; daughter, Rebeka, her husband, Storm Heames, granddaughter Isis Holcombe, grandsons River and Atticus Heames; brother, Paul F. Gill Jr., and his wife, Eleanor; step-sister, Deborah Beckley; step-mother, Phyllis Gill; step-father, Joseph Milano, and many more sisters, step brothers, nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her father, Paul Francis Gill Sr., and her mother, Marion (Delano) Milano (born Cora Mildred Rosecrans); grandparents, John and Mary (Ryan) Gill and Kearney and Mary (Smith) Rosecrans.
Beth attended West Genesee High, Camillus, N.Y., Mohawk Valley Community College, N.Y.; BOCES Nursing School. Onondaga County, N.Y., and Kenai Peninsula Community College, Alaska. She was a member of Phi Theta Kappa honor society, Kenai Peninsula Botanical Society, past President Kenai Peninsula Retriever Association, an officer in CNY competitive marksmanship programs and Onondaga Historical Society, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts.
Her hobbies included mushrooming, native botany, ornamental landscape lardening, raising pheasants and chickens, painting and sculpture, all aspects of art, family genealogy, cooking and baking for friends and larger groups, and collecting and writing cook books.
She worked as a post-op surgical nurse at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Syracuse, N.Y., from 1982-90; a psychiatric and family recovery and psychiatric nurse at Central Peninsula General Hospital, Soldotna, 1990-95; a cook at the Albatross Restaurant, Kalifornsky Beach, 1995-2005; at the Holiday Inn, Liverpool, N.Y., 1972-75; microfilm and historical bookbinding at Hall & McChesney Legal Book Binding, 1968-72; and a retail department store buyer, E.W. Edwards Inc., 1965-68.
Her special friends were Pat Komon Vinson, Nick and Jane Varney, Jeanne Sheridan and Ann Halicy.
Her husband John said, “Beth engaged in drag racing and road rallies, water skiing, ice skating, cycling, kayaking, Girl Scouting as a child and as an adult leader. She loved canoeing and fishing, both in Central New York lakes and rivers and in the Swanson and Kenai rivers in Alaska. She surrounded herself with animals from dairy cows to pheasants to Peninsula retrievers. She could cook big on camp fires or indoors for large charity events. She wrote poetry, sculpted, painted and drew. She could shoot, paint a whole house, build a barn and win prizes at the state fair for cooking and canning. She was known to be a knock-out in a Paris gown at a formal military ball and chew tobacco for a Forester’s College spitting contest on a geology field trip the next morning. She could be an understatement or tell an Irish whopper with the best of them. You can love her for 50 years and still be left wanting more.”
Beth will be buried in a plot near her father in St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Cemetery in Auburn, N.Y., where more than 70 other of her relatives are buried. A second identical stone monument will be at her Alaska homestead property at Falcon’s Ridge, McNeil Canyon, near Homer. She specified two other places where a little of her ashes will be spread. Both are places where she spent time with her father Paul Gill Sr. and with her husband. John Mishko. Those times to be announced later: at Chittenango Falls, N.Y., and on the waters of Kachemak Bay.
Arrangements were made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel & Crematory. Please visit or sign her online guestbook at AlaskanFuneral.com.