Marge Hays (1933 - 2017)

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Soldotna resident Marge Hays, 84, died on Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017, at Central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna, Alaska.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2017, at Kenai Peninsula College in the Ward Building.
Marge was born on Aug. 11, 1933, in Frenchburg, Ky. Her father served as an Air Force chaplain, and her mother was a teacher. During World War II, when Marge was 10 years old, her father was deployed to a secret destination at the same time her mother was sent to a tuberculosis sanitarium and then died. Marge and her younger sister Ann subsequently lived with relatives, who Marge later described as "all so kind to us." When her father returned, he remarried and Marge had two younger sisters, Pat and Liz. Marge graduated from high school in Panama, and attended Sterling College in Kansas, where she met her beloved husband, Hugh, of 61 years. Marge was a strong, independent woman with a good sense of humor. When asked how she and Hugh stayed married so long, she would give a sly grin and say "Oh, gosh, we never had any problems whatsoever - 61 years of wedded bliss!"
Marge worked as a teacher and school counselor in Ohio until 1975, when she agreed to follow Hugh's Alaskan dream. She taught at Sears Elementary School for three years, followed by 20 years at Kenai Peninsula College -UAA, and the completion of her Ph.D. at the age of 50. She believed that it is our responsibility as human beings to do what we can to make the world a better, kinder place. She lived these beliefs by making relationships primary in her life. She was a politically active liberal who got along well with her conservative neighbors and friends, and she loved people of diverse religious beliefs. Don't paint anyone into a corner, she'd say, always give them an out. Most people are trying to do a good job, so leave them a little wiggle room. She served as a former State Commissioner on Aging, State President of the League of Women Voters, and Board Member for the State Mental Health Trust, Kenai-UAA Advisory Board, Soldotna Library and Leeshore Women's Center. Until a few months before her passing, she chaired the Kenai Climate Change Group, and was an active member of her book group, women's investment group and the fitness center.
In the choices she made, the priorities she set, the principles she lived, Marge was the most gifted of teachers. We were blessed beyond words to have her for 84 years.
Surviving family members include her husband, Hugh Hays; daughter, Kim Hays; daughter, Pam Hays and her husband Bob McCard; grandson, Wade Hays and his fiancee Kimmy England; sisters, Pat Rivera and Liz Nightingale of Chicago, Ill.; nieces and nephews and their families; and many, many friends. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Central Peninsula Hospital Foundation, Kenai Peninsula College or Leeshore Women's Center.
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Peninsula Memorial Chapel & Crematory
5839 Kenai Spur Hwy.
Kenai, AK 99611
(907) 283-3333
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Published in Anchorage Daily News on Dec. 17, 2017