Elma Young (Gram)
Elma “Gram” Young, devoted wife, mother, and grandmother and faithful follower of her Lord Jesus Christ. Born June 10, 1932 to Hazel and Elmer Shortridge, she had one sister Pearl Pain. Married in 1950 to her beloved husband Earl Young, they had three sons, Carl, Dana, and Glen.
Elma loved working at the greenhouse, side-by-side with her family and friends. Every year she could be seen smiling as she watered the numerous plants in all 14 greenhouses. Always interested in the lives of others, Elma took pleasure in meeting new customers and chatting with regulars. When not in the greenhouses, Elma enjoyed sewing and making quilts for all of her family and friends. She loved canning and making jams and pickles and frozen corn to give wintertime provisions to her family and friends.
Although her life was characterized by joy, Elma walked through many difficulties, including her husband’s medical crisis in 1999 and again in 2001. During the latter medical event, Elma faithfully accompanied Earl in the hospital daily for over three months, sleeping in the waiting room and at times in his room. As recorded in her journal, Elma, knowing it was the end, and seeing Earl’s peace, sat on the bed beside him and whispered, “Yes, God is coming to get you and I can’t go. Someone has got to tell your family about Christ.” Elma recounted the story of Earl smiling and peacefully falling asleep. She too had peace and knew that God was going to take Earl home. Elma believed that God was not finished with her, but she had a supernatural peace that she had not had before. Elma was blessed to hold Earl’s hand for his final hour on earth. Her journal records her precious thoughts, “Earl went to be with the Lord. The race was run; Earl had won. Only memories and hope in Christ remained. That night in Earl’s room our daughter-in-law, Linda, accepted Christ as her Savior!”
The following Sunday the family had a service for Earl. Pastor Tim returned from Illinois to lead it. There were some that accepted Christ at this service! The service was taped for Elma to have and she was able the following month to visit with Earl’s older sister and sit down and play the tape with her.
Earl’s older sister accepted Christ as her Savior! Soon after, Elma talked with Earl’s brother-in-law, who had brain cancer and he also made a confession of knowing Christ as his Savior!
Later in April, a group of Elma’s family and friends felt led by the Holy Spirit to begin church meetings in each other’s homes and looked forward to getting a pastor. They soon got a pastor and the church really started to grow. They had over 40 people accept Christ as their Savior and be baptized; over half of them related to Earl!
Today, the church has grown with over 300 attending! After 20+ years of sowing and sacrificing, the church has begun a building project which will, Lord-willing, bring an even greater harvest of souls and care for the community and the church body.
On May 3rd, Gram went peacefully to be with the Lord, her family surrounding her.
Psalm 92:13-14 was one of Elma’s treasured Bible verses – Those who are planted in the house of the Lord, shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall bear fruit in their old age.
For Gram, this was not merely a maxim to live by or a verse to memorize, but the truth of it was displayed for all to see throughout her life. Even in her final days and breaths here on earth, her heart and mind were bent in worship toward the Lord and love for friends, family and neighbors who may not yet know His saving power. On May 3, 2022, surrounded by her loving family, Elma peacefully passed from this life into the next, now eternally face-to-face with her Savior and Lord Jesus Christ.
As an old poem by C.T. Studd said, “Only one life, ‘twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.”
Elma was predeceased by her parents; her husband, Earl Young; sister, Pearl Pain. Left to honor her are her three children, Carl and Betty Young, Dana and Linda Young, Glen and Jackie Young; Grandchildren, Pam Young, Sam Young, Danny Young, Tamsyn Frothingham, Amanda Cross, Benjamin Young, Gemma Young; 11 Great Grandchildren.
If you would like to watch Elma Young’s full celebration of life, click here.
At Young’s Greenhouse, our displays change often and we pride ourselves in coming up with new displays to wow our visitors! GRAM created an idea of a new display in 2009 to take a tree, turn it upside down, and plant annuals into the roots of the tree (far left image). Over the years since, we have planted many of these tree displays filling them with petunias and ivy. They are big displays and have been enjoyed by many over the years. GRAM loved these tree displays!
Center image, GRAM watering plants in the greenhouses.
Far right image, another display of flowers. This one is a manure spreader from the farm that we stood upright and filled with petunias.