Rowley — Marion F. (Johnston) Stuart, 94, a longtime resident of Amesbury and Salisbury, passed away peacefully early Sunday morning, Dec. 2, 2012, at the Seaview Retreat in Rowley with family at her side. She is now reunited with her beloved husband of 61 years, Walter Stuart, who passed away in 2004.
Born in Ft. Fairfield, Maine, Aug. 7, 1918, Marion was the daughter of the late Romey and Bernice (Hersey) Johnston. She was a graduate of Ft. Fairfield High School, class of 1935, and McIntosh Business College.
Both Marion and Walter were well-known in the community for their dedication to Christian service. As an active member of the former First Baptist Church of Newburyport, now known as Hope Community Church, Marion served for many years on the Missions Committee and was a member of the Ladies Fellowship and the Seacoast Christian Women’s Club and maintained lasting relationships with her women’s group, the Akita Club. After retirement from Harold Humphrey Insurance Agency, she served as a member of the Northern Essex Elder Transport, providing rides for seniors to their medical appointments.
Marion particularly loved serving on the Church Missions Committee, as she and Walter maintained personal relationships with the missionaries over the years, regularly exchanging letters and often hosting them in their home. The bonds that came from a shared commitment to service developed into long-lasting friendships. Known for the strength of her faith, she served as a guiding light for her family and all who knew her.
As a family, the Stuarts spent every summer camping, hiking, canoeing, playing games with the grandchildren, and enjoying those special times of story or song around the campfire. Marion played the piano as music was always a part of the life they shared. Continuing to be active into her later years, she could be found lugging her bag of weights off to exercise class in Amesbury or, being such a lover of dance her whole life, in the line dancing classes at the Senior Center in Salisbury.
Marion leaves behind the family she loved so dearly, her two daughters, Marcia L. Stuart of Martinez, Calif., and Diane L. Martin and husband Terry of Seabrook, N.H; her grandchildren, Sherry Jackman and husband, George; Craig Martin and wife, Laurie; and Keith Courtemanche, Jeff Courtemanche and Amy Courtemanche Baut; as well as 16 great-grandchildren. Marion is survived by her brother, Ralph Johnston of Maine; and was predeceased by her brother, Warren Johnston of Maine and sisters, Alice Shannon of Massachusetts and Glenna Haines of New York.
ARRANGEMENTS: Visiting hours will be held on Friday, Dec. 7, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., immediately followed by the service at 1 p.m. at the Highland Chapel of Paul C. Rogers & Sons Family Funeral Home, 2 Hillside Ave., Amesbury. A private interment will be held at Bartlett Cemetery, Amesbury.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Missions at Hope Community Church, 11 Hale St., Newburyport MA 01950.