Wylie Farmer Mertz, of San Mateo passed away November 2, 2021 in San Mateo, age 74.
Born on September 28, 1947 in Manila, Philippines she grew up in Japan where her father worked in the shipping industry. She attended the Canadian Academy in Kobe before graduating from St. Godric’s College in London, UK.
After a career as a flight attendant with TWA Airways and a first marriage to William F. Mertz Jr., president of a New York City textile firm, Wylie moved from New York City to San Mateo, CA where she raised two daughters. Drawing on her lifelong artistic talent, Wylie trained as an apprentice glass blower before opening her own custom neon glass company. For many years, commercial establishments of all kinds around the Bay Area featured Wylie’s custom designed neon glass signs and she earned a reputation as a skilled and innovative artisan.
In 2005, Wylie married her long-time partner John Ryan whom she had grown up with in Japan. Together they lived many happy years in San Mateo and Millbrae.
A vibrant personality and character with a sharp sense of humor Wylie enjoyed friendships with people of all ages and all walks of life. She was a lifelong animal lover who treated her many cats as family and who reserved a special love and attachment to her granddaughters Eden O’Connor and Lillian Beers.
In addition to her husband and granddaughters, Wylie is survived by her daughters Courtney O’Connor of Los Gatos and Remy Beers of San Francisco and her brother and sister-in-law Guy and Mary Farmer of Tallahassee, Florida and two nieces Maggie & Leila and nephew Jeffrey. Wylie will be memorialized privately. If desired, donations in her name may be made to the Peninsula Humane Society and ASPCA.