Cover photo for Gwynne Lee Strader's Obituary
Gwynne Lee Strader Profile Photo
1933 Gwynne 2023

Gwynne Lee Strader

October 7, 1933 — January 11, 2023

Sarasota, Florida

Gwynne was born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Her parents were Rebecca Miller Strader and James William Strader. She graduated high school in Statesville, North Carolina, and after, attended commercial art school in Nashville, Tennessee.


All of her adult life, Gwynne loved to travel and held a deep appreciation for other cultures. That's why her decision to join the U.S. Department of State, Foreign, Service, in 1960 was so fitting, both personally and professionally. Gwynne's 37 years of service included two State-side assignments in Washington, D.C., as well as a myriad of overseas assignments, where she primarily served as executive secretary to U.S. Ambassadors, career officers and Presidential appointees alike. Something of a "globe trotter," Gwynne's posts abroad included: Madrid, Spain; Kingston, Jamaica; London, England; Bridgetown, Barbados; Port-of-Spain, Trinidad; Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; and Nassau, The Bahamas. Gwynne also roved for two years in Latin America and the Caribbean-and even did a short stint in Peshawar, Pakistan.


Gwynne was a member of the Allapattah Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution and First Methodist Church, both in Sarasota, Florida, where she lived after her retirement in 1997 until her passing in January 2023.


She is survived by three sisters, Rachel McClure, Ann Young, and Alexis Hurlburt, a brother, James William Strader, Jr., along with many nieces and nephews, and her beloved Australian Labradoodle, Olive. Gwynne will be greatly missed by all who were fortunate enough to be touched by her humor, grace and vivacious, generous spirit. For her passion for life and love of art, culture and literature, for her strong faith and devotion to her family and friends, including Olive who kept her young, and for the brightness she brought into the world, Gwynne will forever remain in our hearts with her precious memory a true blessing.


Today and every day, Gwynne lives on all around us-a belief that is beautifully captured in one of her favorite poems:

Do not stand

By my grave, and weep.

I am not there,

I do not sleep-

I am the thousand winds that blow

I am the diamond glints in snow

I am the sunlight on ripened grain,

I am the gentle, autumn rain.

As you awake with morning's hush,

I am the swift, up-flinging rush

Of quiet birds in circling flight,

I am the day transcending night.

Do not stand

By my grave, and cry-

I am not there,

I did not die.

"Immortality" by Clare Harner, 1934

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