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Mary Marlowe

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Mary Marlowe Obituary
Mary Jane Marlowe, 93, a resident of Boulder for 61 years, died at her home on June 11 of natural causes. Mary Jane was born on April 26, 1921, in the living room of a farmhouse in rural Iowa. Her parents were Arthur J. Woodcock and Hazel Webster Woodcock. When Mary Jane was six years old, her father bought her a pony, which she rode to and from school for eight years. During that time, she was active in 4H and had hundreds of pets - the farm animals her family raised. As the nearest high school was in Indianola - far from the farm - Mary Jane had to leave her beloved family behind at a young age. The daily calls home to her mother and grandmother, Sallie Webster, made life away from the farm bearable. Mary Jane accompanied the high school orchestra on the piano and graduated as a National Honor Student. As a senior she was voted Queen of the Indianola High School Carnival. In 1939 Mary Jane enrolled at Simpson College in Indianola, where she was selected All College Sweetheart and was a member of Delta Delta Delta sorority. Her education prepared her to teach after graduation, and she instructed third graders in the New Virginia and Winterset schools for a number of years. In 1944 Mary Jane married Harry Marlowe, Jr. They spent 52 loving years together. After Harry's service during World War II, the couple bought their first dry cleaning plant. While Harry attended the International Fabricare Institute, his parents taught Mary Jane the business. Their daughter, Sharman Ann, was born in 1950 in Washington, Iowa. In 1953 the family moved to Boulder. Around that same time Mary Jane pledged Beta Sigma Phi and became a life member. Harry and Mary Jane opened Art Cleaners at 1717 15th Street, which the Marlowes operated for 20 years, making friends with innumerable Boulderites along the way. After selling Art Cleaners and retiring in 1983, Harry and Mary Jane spent three lovely years together, including cruises to Alaska and the Caribbean. Mary Jane then became Harry's caregiver when his health failed. He died in 1996. Mary Jane was grateful for her loving family, consisting of Sharman and her late husband Larry Penfold, and their three children, Marlowe Ann Penfold Kim and her husband George Kim, Ward Alexander Penfold and his wife Jennifer Stark, and Conor Arthur Penfold, all of California. She had three great grandsons, Carter, Blake and Spencer Kim. Her dear half-brother Arthur Woodcock and his wife Becky live in Des Moines, Iowa, and have three boys, David, Mark and Matthew. Mary Jane also enjoyed food and fun with her dear friend, Skip D'Amore, during the four years leading up to his death in 2013. Mary Jane and Skip met at the West Senior Center, where they participated in many activities. "Little Janie" led a charmed life. She loved living in Boulder for six decades and in her beautiful home for more than 40 years. She cherished her family, friends and dear customers. In turn, her loved ones will remember her as a stylish, quick-witted, dynamic and caring person who charmed everyone she met. She was also an epic storyteller whose vivid tales will be remembered for years to come. A memorial service will be held for Mary Jane at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 21, 2014, at Crist Mortuary, which is located at 3395 Penrose Place in Boulder.

Published in The Boulder Daily Camera on June 18, 2014
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