Obituary of Marion A. Rae
Marion, beloved mother of John and Pat, of Cape Vincent NY, and Kingston, ON, passed away peacefully with her children by her side on September 19, 2019, at the age of 95 years.
Marion Adeline Gee was born and raised near Lacombe Alberta and was first and foremost an Alberta farm girl. Her love for the countryside, for the strong and loving spirit of her mother Grace, and for the laughter, mischief, and music she shared with her siblings Marge, Don, and Rex, defined her and never wavered. Marion’s life blossomed during the war years, when she studied at business college in Calgary and lived at the YWCA with the girls who became her best friends for life, Alice Snoxell (“Snox”) Smith and Beth Dueck (“Betsy”) Haggins. After the war she moved to Edmonton where, at the district office of the Department of National Revenue, she met her beloved husband, son of Edmonton, Jack Rae. The two settled into a life rich with friends and faith, on 117th Avenue, at First Presbyterian Church, at the Gee family farms, and at Edmonton Eskimos games, where Marion’s attention tended more towards enthusiastic chats with fellow season ticket holders than to the science of the sport. Thanksgivings with the Calgary Smiths, jellied salads at church suppers, and family picnics at Gull Lake were the stuff of life. She was a staunch supporter of the sporting adventures and political demonstrations of John’s 117th Avenue Warriors. Her fortitude in shepherding the Gigsies on adventures – dance recitals, skating carnivals, and a life-changing trip to the Sound of Music --was legendary.
In 1967, Marion and Jack made the difficult decision to uproot the family and relocate to Ottawa, where a new phase of life began. Marion’s irrepressible spirit soon brought her great friends in her new neighborhood and at St. Paul’s Presbyterian, where she would sing in the choir for over forty years. While Jack traveled for work, she created a perfect home for her teenagers and their friends, always welcoming “you young people” with warmth, trust, and cookies. She returned to the workforce as an executive secretary at Labour Canada where she delighted in office life. She and Jack enjoyed many memorable trips with friends, including to the U.K. where they met the Queen, and to Cooperstown New York, where they spent many hours in the Baseball Hall of Fame. After Jack’s death in 1986, Marion remained in her home for over twenty-five years, tending her garden and her dear kitties Misty and Exey and providing countless happy get-togethers for John and Brenda and their boys John Andrew and Will, Pat and Mark and their son Karl, and far-flung nieces and nephews. She took full advantage of Ottawa’s cultural scene, studying music at Ottawa U and faithfully attending the Women’s Canadian Club. She was honored for her many years of service to New Orchard Lodge, where she played the piano for the residents as she had done for the airmen in southern Alberta during the war. Marion spent her final years in Kingston to be near family. During that time, she was blessed by her marriage to Jim Logan, an unanticipated source of happiness for them both. After Jim’s death, and with her own health failing, she received incomparable care at Providence Manor, for which her family will always be deeply grateful.
Marion had a uniquely sweet and gentle spirit that was apparent to all who met her, whether through the normal channels or at bus stops. She was a friend to all of John and Pat’s friends, keeping in touch with many of them over the years. She had a special place in her heart for her nieces and nephews who lost their own parents too soon. Her three grandsons were the lights of her life and they can be forever confident of how much she loved them.
Marion is survived by her devoted children, John and Pat, her son-in-law Mark and daughter-in-law Sheb, her beloved grandsons, John Andrew, Will and Karl, and her cherished nieces and nephews, Perry, Mark, Barry, Donna, Brian, Murray, Dave and Barb.
A private family service has taken place. In lieu of flowers, friends wishing to remember Marion may consider donations to either the Ottawa Humane Society, https://ottawahumane.ca , or Youth Empowerment Services (YESS) in Edmonton, https://yess.org .