Abigail "Gail" Demarest - Wilday
(1941 - 2011)


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General Details

Name: Mrs Abigail "Gail" Demarest - Wilday
Nick Name: "Demi"
Maiden Name: Demarest
Gender: Female
Age: 69 years old
Lived: Sunday, 23 November 1941 - Monday, 21 November 2011

My Story

Gail Dennison Demarest-Wilday - Renowned Sculptor Dear Loving Mother, Daughter, Sister, and Wife

It is with a bittersweet sadness, the Demarest family announces the passing of a most beloved member of their circle, Abigail Gail Demarest Wilday, who passed away in the early morning hours on November 21, 2011. Gail was challenged by a rare, tragic, debilitating illness. She met this, how she met every challenge in her life; with a brave heart and strong spirit, without complaint, and always with an expressive bright smile and laughter. She is an inspiration.Gail will best be remembered for her graceful and sparkling personality, contagious laughter, love for the “whimsy”, creative unique and colorful vocabulary, and of personal gestures, both great and small, always making one feel loved and appreciated. Gail was a long-time resident of Connecticut, who spent time in Reno, Nevada. The final week of Gail’s journey, Gail’s children, brothers and sisters joined hands across the country to grant her wish to be in her native Connecticut, surrounded by those who loved her when she passed.Gail D. Demarest was born on Nov. 23rd 1941 in Orange, New Jersey. She was the oldest of 6 children raised by Dr. Gerald B. and Marian E. Demarest in Westfield, New Jersey. The family was very active in the community and summered in Belle Island, Rowayton, Ct. a family homestead since the 1800’s. Gail graduated Roosevelt High-school and attended Colby Sawyer College where she studied and earned an Associate’s in medical technology. Upon graduation she moved to San Francisco and worked in the medical field but soon returned to The East Coast to work as a photographer’s assistant for Vogue Magazine in New York where she assisted and art directed sets. She always came back to her love of art.In the early 80s she began to study sculpture on a professional level. Her first major show was held at the Nature Center in Westport. It was here that her work caught the eye of a representative of Dyansen Galleries who represented Erte’ world-famous lithographer and recruited her to sculpt a number of pieces (taking the artist’s 2 dimensional art and interpreting it into 3-d bronze sculptures) Her work is represented in 3 limited edition pieces now that can be found around the World!In the early 90’s Gail joined “high-school sweetheart” Peter B. Wilday, a successful hotel/casino/resort architect & designer in Reno, Nevada. They married and worked together in a wonderful partnership that called for the creation of numbers of large and incredibly creative sculptures of bronze and marble. These pieces are found in hotels and other public spaces throughout Nevada. She would in exhaustively spend days upon days in “foundries” in New York creating magnificent works of art. This was her LOVE and life’s calling. She spent the next 20 years working on numerous `large sculpture installations around the country. Every piece she has created is a legacy and testament to her talent and love of creation…Her artistic talent was not limited to paint and clay… she also had a special way of healing people’s hearts and was an everlasting confidant to innumerous friends and family-members. Gail is survived by her two children: David Cree Crawford, of Austin, Texas and Lindsay Brook Crawford Aytes of Reno, Nevada. Son-in-Law, Justin Aytes, Grandsons Aiden and Mason, Mother, Marian Dally Demarest, Sisters: Susan “Susu” Demarest Kellogg, Wilton, Connecticut, Paige Demarest Barr, San Clemente, California; Brothers: Gerald (Chip) Birch Demarest, Albuquerque, New Mexico, David Cornell Demarest, Highland Park, Illnois, and Peter Bedford Demarest, New Canaan, Connecticut, Husband Peter B. Wilday, and an large extended family of loving Cousins, Nieces and Nephews who will miss their “Auntie Gail”

As a tribute to Gail and her father, the late Dr. Gerald B. Demarest, the Demarest family crest, cast in stone by Gail herself, has been memorialized in a granite bench and placed on “Rocky Point” on Belle Island, Rowayton, Connecticut.A memorial service is scheduled to take place on Saturday, December 3, 2011, at 2 pm at the Wilton Congregational Church, in Wilton, Connecticut.

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A bright light she was and is!


Fathers Name: Dr. Gerald Birch Demarest
Mothers Name: Marian E. Demarest
Spouse's Name: Peter B. Wilday
Children's Names: Brooke Aytes & Cree Crawford
Siblings Names: Susan Kellogg, Gerald "Chip" Demarest, David Demarest, Peter Demarest, & Paige Barr
Country of Birth: USA
Country of Residence: USA
City of Residence: Reno
Occupation: Self-Employment



Place of Passing: Connecticut
Date of Passing: 21 November 2011
Cause of Passing: She finally let go of her broken body ....
Type of Funeral: She will be cremated...
Place of Burial: We will share her with Long Island Sound at her favorite place "Rocky Point" Rowayton Ct.
Funeral Location: "Rocky Point" Rowayton, Ct.
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