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MADISON-Marjorie Fay (Fink) Vargas, age 78, escaped the progressive grip of Parkinson's disease on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013, at the Agrace Hospice Inpatient Center. She was born Jan. 8, 1935, in Green Bay, to the late Henry and Irma (Tornow) Fink. After meeting the love of her life in LaPaz, Bolivia in 1968, Marge and Federico Vargas were wed on March 24, 1972. He remained devoted to her, caring for her at their home as her illness progressed, and later visiting her daily at the nursing homes.
Marge followed her love of literature and language arts toward a Bachelor of Science (1958) and Master of Science (1961) degrees in English Education from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Marge began her teaching career at Neenah High School before returning to graduate school at UW Madison. Following a brief position at UW Marathon Co. in Wausau, she found her niche in 1964, teaching high school English in the Malcolm Price Laboratory School at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, where she also guided a steady stream of student teachers for 34 years.
Marge also loved to write, completing many short stories and memoirs over the years and a novel. Finding a lack of teaching resources on non-verbal communication, she wrote her own book on the subject, Louder than Words, which was published in 1986. Upon retirement in 1998 as Assistant Professor of Teaching: Language Arts, she donated her vast literature collection to UNI for those following her chosen career. She then returned to Wisconsin in 2000, purchasing a home in Cottage Grove.
Besides her husband Federico, Marjorie is survived by two sisters, Marilyn (Kenneth) Rabideau of Green Bay and Helen (Terence) Ladwig of Mt. Horeb; her brother, Lawrence Fink, also of Green Bay; several brothers and sisters-in-law in South America; as well as nieces and nephews in both the US and South America. Her parents preceded her in death.
Her family would like to thank Agrace Hospice, Nazareth Health and Rehabilitation Center, St. Jude Hospice and Middleton Village Nursing and Rehabilitation Center for their compassionate care given Marge over the past several years.
Funeral services were held at GUNDERSON EAST FUNERAL HOME, 5203 Monona Dr., Madison at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013 with Pastor John Twiton presiding. Burial will be at Highland Memory Gardens in Cottage Grove at a later date. Visitation was held at the funeral home from 11 a.m. until the time of the service on Saturday.
Memorials may be made in Marjorie's name to the Wisconsin Chapter APDA (American Parkinson Disease Association) P.O. Box 7513 Madison, WI 53707-7513 or to the
. Online condolences may be made at www.gundersonfh.com.
Funeral & Cremation Care
5203 Monona Dr.
Gunderson East Funeral Home
5203 Monona Drive Monona, WI 53716
Published in Des Moines Register on Nov. 10, 2013