I was saddened to learn of Melanie Mayer-Gideon’s passing. She was only 52 years old.
Melanie, along with her husband Yohn owned the Captain’s Inn Bed and Breakfast in Moss Landing. We met after her comment on my blog post What Low Tide Reveals — when my friends Jean, Joselyn and I visited the Captain’s Inn.
Through Melanie’s blog comment, she further connected and extended her knowledge and her love of this area to a transplant like me….
I did not realize until now, how instrumental she was in getting the Moss Landing Marine Laboratories (MLML) rebuilt after the Loma Prieta earthquake (the major Bay Area 1989 – World Series Earthquake).
An excerpt from the MLML/Cal State website:
We have lost a champion, an advocate, colleague, a student, an alum, a friend, and a devoted mother, all way too soon and in unexpected tragedy.
The recent news has deeply penetrated the labs, our network and the resonated sympathies keep pouring in…we are reeling, and the drums are beating.
We wish that there was more comfort in this passing, but for now, there seems to be little beyond shock and our memories. Yet, we want you all to know, that these memories, and our personal interactions with Melanie, have touched us in many personal and formidable ways.
Melanie was a true native of north Monterey County, graduated Salinas High School in 1978 and eventually found her way into graduate school at Moss Landing Marine Laboratories in her own backyard.
Her thesis involved the “Flowering Plant Recruitment into a Newly Restored Salt Marsh in Elkhorn Slough, California,” advised by Mike Foster, Greg Cailliet and John Oliver.
Her thesis research reflected her ‘community’ approach to life, acknowledging Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve, Ken Moore, Sheila Baldridge, Larry Jones, Preston Watwood, Ken Delopst, Lynn McMasters, Gail Johnston, Dorothy Lydick, George Knauer, Meritt Tuel, Brian Fadely, Peter and Tony Young, Ruby Peterson, Marge Reidpath, Benthic Bubs, Mark Sliger, Keiko Sekiguchi, Mark Silberstein, Frances Cresswell, Steve Horn, her parents and her brother Eric.
Two years following the completion of her thesis, the laboratories were completely destroyed by the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake, and Melanie’s trajectory experienced a course correction towards a new kind of restoration: that of the laboratories’ reconstruction. This also launched her career as a permit consultant. She, together with a small cadre of attorneys and other MLML graduates, was the point person for reconstruction strategy….
….Her love of life and people was always obvious in her smile and loving personality. Her values, love, life, integrity and accomplishments should serve as an example for us all, and will never be forgotten. To Yohn and his family, we offer our deepest sympathies and our utmost support.
Kenneth Coale, Mike Foster, Greg Cailliet, John Oliver
Read the complete post “A Tearful Farewell to Melanie Mayer-Gideon: True MLML Champion, Friend, and Alumna” here.
Farewell Melanie, and condolences to your family and your many friends in the community.