MARTINI--Marion Mann, 85, of Chapel Hill, NC and New York City died on February 17, 2014 at home in Chapel Hill. She was born in New York City, daughter of Thomas Dixon Mann and Elsa Olga Muller. After graduating from Rhodes High School, Marion worked for Standard Oil (now Exxon) for 12 years, attending classes at New York University, the Baruch School of Business and the Practicing Law Institute. In her 30s, she earned a State Department scholarship to the University of Sao Paulo, to finish her bachelor's degree at NYU. In Sao Paulo, she was taught by Fernando Cardoso, who later became the president of Brazil. The life-changing trip led to a marriage, daughter, and a lifetime love of all things Brazilian-music, culture, friends and business. Marion worked for BANESPA for 18 years. She received the Brasilio Machado Neto award from the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce for her "very significant efforts and contribution on behalf of commerce and human betterment," and a commendation from the New York State Governor's office for her action on HMOs. She was active in the New York University Club, was an officer and board member for the Dames of the Loyal Legion, New York State, past historian and patriotic officer for the Sons and Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War, past historian for the American Association of University Women, past member of the boards of the World Ship Society and the American Association for University Women. Life did not slow on retirement to Chapel Hill, where she toured the South, designed tours for Parks and Recreation, and volunteered for the UNC Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program and as a translator for UNC hospitals. She was a devotee of history, bowling, opera, ballet and the symphony, and was a political and philosophical thinker. She is survived by a brother, Richard Mann, of Portland OR, and daughter, Marinna Martini of Falmouth, MA. Memorial donations may be made to The League of Women Voters or to UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Published in The New York Times on Feb. 26, 2014