Pauline Villard Schiedel Asher

By May 21, 2011

Pauline Villard Schiedel Asher


Born in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, to Herbert Noah Schiedel and Emma Marie Villard, R.N., of Prince Edward Island, Pauline Asher was raised on the family grain and cattle ranch in Saskatoon with her older sister, Alice Kathryn, and her favorite terrier, Trotsky. Her father died when the girls were young; the farm was sold and Emma Marie and daughters moved to Toronto, Ontario, where Alice and Pauline completed their college studies at the University of Toronto.

Pauline subsequently obtained a nursing degree, while her sister became an expert bridge player as well as a photographer and journalist for the Canadian media. Pauline’s first nursing position was at Strong Memorial Hospital at the University of Rochester, where she met her future husband, William Asher, M.D., a medical intern, in 1941. While William was serving as a physician aboard a PT boat in the Mediterranean, Pauline gave birth to her son Stephen in California; her second son, Andrew, was born three years later while William was completing his medical residency at the University of Michigan. The family returned to William’s childhood home in California.

As her sons grew up, Pauline pursued her education and obtained a master’s in art history at UCLA. Excelling also in studio art, she studied with Fritz Faiss and Elmer Bischoff. She later became a proponent of “Small is Beautiful,” an early statement of the local movement, lending her support to a small sheep farm which provided naturally pigmented wools to local weavers. Ever a green thumb, and never one to take the easy way, in 1968 she and William purchased a vineyard, much in need of restoration, on the Silverado Trail in St. Helena, which later became their home and their passion.

William preceded her in death in 2000. Pauline lived in Boise since 1987, to be nearer to one arm of her family. Since being in Idaho, she was a member of St. Michael’s Cathedral, whose love has been much appreciated.

She is survived by her sons Stephen William Asher, M.D., of Boise, Idaho, and Andrew Villard Asher of Sacramento, as well as five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Our thanks to Wynnwood Assisted Living, and later to Grace Assisted Living, for the thoughtfulness. We also wish to thank Heart and Home Hospice for their loving care during these most difficult months.

She was a private person who, by example and through talent, brought meaning to the word “fine.” A private memorial is planned at a later date. Donations in her name to St. Michael’s Cathedral in Boise or the Idaho Botanical Gardens would be her wish.

Rest in peace. You have meant the world to us all.

Special to The Enterprise

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