'An amazing woman'

Community says goodbye to long-term resident, activist

Her son Bryan remembered her as a community stalwart and "an amazing woman" belonging to an "amazing God."

Another son, Jamie, remembered his mother as someone who liked to take road trips and subject her children to volumes of Barbra Streisand music along the way. And, he said, "a good dose of Cher on the way home."

Her close friend, Gail, related stories of a caring friend, who stood by her beliefs, even while surrounded by people with far different opinions.

For 32 years, the late Georgina McAnally -- a pillar involved in numerous causes in the business and volunteer communities -- possessed a love and dedication to the city of Craig. She was the owner of American Northwest Realty and belonged to numerous economic development and public service-oriented boards in town.

Between 375 and 400 community members, friends and family paid their respects to her Friday afternoon at St. Michael Catholic Church.

A reception followed at the Boys & Girls Club of Craig.

The service, filled with bittersweet tales drawing laughter and tears, comes nearly a week after Georgina died at her home on Box Canyon Road.

Her eldest son, the Rev. Bryan McAnally, officiated Friday's service. His words sought to comfort the heavy-hearted mourners. He described his mother as a matriarch to both her family and the community at large.

"Mom considered Craig her family ... she did not want anyone to do without because all of you were her family," he said.

Her faith is what gained her entry into someplace far better than the world she left behind, he added.

"Because of that, she had a life that blessed many and now she has eternal life in heaven," Bryan said.

In this hour of grief, Bryan encouraged community members to allow themselves time to heal from the loss.

"I see tears today ... but I want to tell you tears are OK," he said. "We cry because of what we lost. I encourage you to cry as much as you need to."

Her friend, Gail Severson, said Georgina's caring spirit fueled her desire to "take wonderful care of senior citizens" and children and made others around her smile.

"She was a shining star in our lives, out of all the people who were fortunate enough to know her," Severson said.

"Life goes on," she said to the crowd, "but let's never forget our friend, Georgina."

Mary Beth Pyle, from whom Georgina purchased the realty business, said she and McAnally once made unsuccessful attempts to earn a seat on the Moffat County Board of Commissioners. In heaven, Pyle said, the Democratic McAnally would win an election in a landslide.

"Because Lord knows there aren't many Republicans up there," she quipped.

She also bid her friend farewell.

"Bye for now, Georgina. Love you, miss you and I really wish you were here."

Dave DeRose, also a close McAnally acquaintance, said Georgina's life epitomized the old saying that "it takes a village to raise a child," and that she was "able to bring that out in all of us." He said she embodied the promise of John F. Kennedy's words -- "ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country."

He said Georgina could be found on a cold winter's night soliciting community members for donations to fund the "Christmas for Kids," a program she helped found that donated gifts for underprivileged local children.

"No matter if you were dropping off a check for $1,000, you never thought it was enough because of what she was doing," DeRose said.

Her son, Jamie, and her brother, Robert Horgas, left mourners with hope that they would see Georgina again.

"I know she's touched all of your hearts somehow," Horgas said. "I know she would be very, very proud today. ... She is with us, and God is with us."

"We all will meet up with you in heaven," Jamie said, "as we are all grateful to the impact you made on our lives."

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