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10/22/1943 — 10/09/2022
From Richland, WA | Born in Salt Lake City, UT
Marilyn Karen (Christiansen) Darke
Marilyn was born October 22, 1943 in Salt Lake City, Utah. She was an only child who grew up in Salt Lake City and graduated from Granite High School in 1961. She graduated from the University of Utah with a BA degree in Education in 1965. She graduated Magna Cum Laude and was a member of the Phi Kappa Phi honor society. She taught in the Murray and Salt Lake City school districts.
She married William (Bill) Darke in 1970 and they had a daughter, Amy, in 1974.
After moving to Denver, Colorado in 1979, she taught in the Denver and Cherry Creek school districts.
The family moved to Richland, Washington in 1986. Marilyn taught in the Richland school district until she retired in 1997.
Marilyn had a wide variety of interests, including knitting, sewing, gardening, guitar playing, and watercolor painting. She and her husband used to play tennis together and walked regularly by the Columbia river. She was a member of the Three Rivers Folklife Society and a long-time volunteer at the Tumbleweed Music Festival. She was a regular participant in the monthly Sea Song Singalongs. She was also a member of PEO Chapter DT. Bill and Marilyn were active participants in the Pacific Northwest Mustang Club. Marilyn was a long-time docent at the Crehst museum.
After retirement, they traveled to Hell’s Canyon, the San Juan Islands, Alaska, the Caribbean and the Mediterranean. They also had a sailboat that they sailed behind Ice Harbor Dam on the Snake River.
During her life, Marilyn was an avid rider of roller coasters. She told Amy that she should always be at the amusement parks when they opened the gates, and then hurry to the roller coaster and ride it consecutively as many times as possible before the line got too long.
She died October 9, 2022 in Richland at age 78. She is survived by her husband Bill, her daughter Amy, and her grandson Duncan Reger. She was preceded in death by her parents T.R. Christiansen and Mary Ellen (Engelke) Christiansen.
In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to the Alzheimer’s Association. A graveside service will be held at Sunset Gardens at 1:00pm on October 27, 2022.
From “The Parting Glass”
Of all the comrades that e’er I had
They’re sorry for my going away
And all the sweethearts that e’er I had
Would wish me one more day to stay
But since it falls unto my lot
That I should rise and you should not
I gently rise and softly call
Good night and joy be with you all
It is very sad news to hear of Marilyn’s passing. She was a vibrant bubbly member of the CREHST Museum and was always happily willing to help wherever she could. There are not enough words to express the impact she had on our museum family and she will be greatly missed. We send our thoughts and love to her family.
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I enjoyed working with Marilyn over the years at the CREHST Museum and at the Tumbleweed Music Festival . Her smile and enthusiasm while sharing with visitors was contagious! Seeing Marilyn and Bill together at Three Rivers Folklife events always brought a smile as well – my heart goes out to Bill and their family as they go through this time.
I always enjoyed Marilyn’s friendly personality. I enjoyed working with her at Tapteal. We would always chat when we would meet in public or in the neighborhood given we lived by each other. She was a wonderful lady and will be missed.
Marilyn and I taught at Tapteal School for several years. I have a passion for the Oregon Trail and she always connected to my interests with conversation, insights of places she visited, and articles she shared. Always open and inviting, she opened her heart to all. I will miss her. Such an authentic person. Love to her family.
A very fine and principled lady. She will be missed by all if us.
I will never forget Marilyn from our docent days at CREST. She was so friendly and helpful to all visitors and always with a big smile. She was just to young to pass-on.
Oh, my. So sorry to hear of Marilyn’s passing. I so enjoyed teaching with her. She was a very caring teacher. I also enjoyed working and singing with her at 3RFS events especially SSSSS.
We are so sorry to hear of Marilyn’s passing. We know Bill and Marilyn from the Mustang club where she was always a joy to talk to and have missed their Prescence at our gatherings. Our deepest condolences to Bill and their family. Bill and Julie Schwartz and all of the Pacific Northwest Mustang Club.