Marilyn E. (Schantz) Whitney
1941 - 2020
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WINTHROP – Marilyn E. (Schantz) Whitney, 78, of Winthrop died Friday evening, September 11, 2020, at St. Mary's Campus of Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota. A funeral service was held at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, September 16, at the Church of Christ United, Winthrop, with Jason Evans officiating. Visitation was conducted from 4 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday at Fawcett-Schmitz Funeral Home, Winthrop, and for one hour before the service at the church on Wednesday. Interment was at Fairview Cemetery, Winthrop.

Cards and memorials may be sent to: Marilyn Whitney Family, 301 Larick Drive, Marion, IA 52302.

Due to state and federal guidance on gatherings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing was be required, and those in attendance were encouraged to wear a mask at the service. We encourage relatives and friends not able to attend the service to reach out to the family by leaving a message on the funeral home website or by mail, text, or phone.

Marilyn Elaine Whitney, 78 was born September 26, 1941, the only daughter of Carlton and Darlene (Phillips) Schantz at St. Luke's hospital in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She attended school in Littleport, Communia Country School, and Troy Mills until the age of 16, when she quit to marry Duane Whitney on July 12, 1958, at the Lutheran Church in Center Point. To this union, four children were born.

Marilyn spent her newly married years as a housewife and in-home daycare provider until being hired as a factory laborer at the local plastic factory, where she was a hardworking and dedicated employee of Triangle Plastics, Inc. for 30+ years.

Marilyn and Duane spent their summer weekends camping with their family, first in a leaky tent, graduating to a fold down, and then a lovely pull-behind trailer. That penchant for sitting around a campfire with friends continued after the death of her husband in 2004, when she purchased her own little pull-behind.

While her love of that pastime never waned, the effort of upkeep on her trailer and home became more than she could handle, and eventually she sold both, moving into the Midtown Manor Apartments on the main drag in Winthrop in 2005. There, she met new friends and strengthened ties with old ones as together they spent countless hours playing Scrabble during the winter months and, when the weather warmed, she could be found sitting on the patio where together they would solve not only their own problems, but the world's.

Driving herself and her friends, right up to the last, she couldn't resist stopping at garage sales, despite the hardship and toll it took on her body. On the final drive to the hospital, she pointed out the signs and longed wistfully to stop, knowing it was impossible.

She enjoyed birthday trips to the casinos and was an amazing cook and baker, never using a measuring device in her life to put on a spread any professional would envy. Her motto was, "I'd rather have a ton of leftovers than for one person to go away hungry." She detested being late to any appointment or event, and was often an hour early, "just in case."

Always the initiator of a game of Canasta, 500, Buck Euchre, or Dominos with her kids, grandkids, and brothers that would often go well into the wee hours of the morning, she was famous for always wanting to play one more round.

Marilyn had a true servant's heart, baking pies and making fudge for funerals and church events, working the pew ride, rolling bandages, and volunteering for the blood drive. She joyfully drove family and friends to appointments, shopping, and sometimes just to sit in her "buggy" in the Walmart parking lot to people watch in the hopes of seeing someone she knew and have a chance to visit with.

She was a kind and thoughtful soul, remembering everyone she loved with greeting cards on their birthdays, anniversaries, and at Christmas.

Never one to pass up an opportunity to gamble, on Friday, September 11, 2020, she bet it all and bravely chose to accept the risks associated with a life-enhancing surgery, saying, "I can't live like this anymore." Known for beating the odds, more often than not, the good Lord had other plans and called her home. And, while our hearts are broken, hers was full, as she was able to see her children, facetime her sons-in-law and daughter-in-law, as well as with each and every one of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren the evening before her surgery.

Marilyn was a member of the Church of Christ United, Women's Fellowship, and Chief Union Steward at TPI for 20 years.

A woman of faith, a loving and devoted wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, and in-law. A loyal friend to many and a stranger to no one, she was preceded in death by her husband; parents; brother, Donald Schantz; niece, Kathy Jo Schantz; nephews, Richard, Tim, and Tom Schantz; and in-laws, Leonard and Ilene Whitney.

She is survived by her daughters, Lisa (Kent) Walton of Marion, Tracey Bellach (Monty Teel) of Marion, and Jackie (Roger) Post of Fayette; her son, Wayland (Jennifer) Whitney of Marion; nine grandchildren, Laurie (Adam) Opperman, Caleb (Sara) Walton, Kasey Bellach, Kody (Erica) Bellach, Ethan (Emily) Walton, Nathan Post, Nicholas (Kim) Post, Marissa (Trey) Roosa, and Jack Whitney; 11 great-grandchildren, Emma, Izabella, and Alayna Munley, Brayden and Blake Opperman, Quinn, Cora, and Mira Walton, and Bodhi, Roman, and Jaxon Walton; brothers, Dean (Kit) Schantz, Larry (Linda) Schantz, and Paul (Kim) Schantz; sister-in-law, Pamela (Steven) Doty; brother-in-law, Larry (Kim) Whitney; and numerous nieces and nephews.

See the online obituary at www.jamisonschmitzfuneralhome.com.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Independence Bulletin-Journal on Sep. 14, 2020.
MEMORIAL EVENTS
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15
Visitation
04:00 - 07:00 PM
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16
Visitation
09:30 - 10:30 AM
Church of Christ United
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16
Funeral service
10:30 AM
Church of Christ United
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19 entries
October 2, 2020
My sympathy. Marilyn was a fun loving person . Dave enjoyed working with her many years at TPI. Prayers to her family
Jean Griswold
Friend
September 15, 2020
whitney, i missed ya the day you left! loved all those years 2gether working. alwys so sweet & funny! everybody had a good day when u around. love to gossip monday mornings about the crazy escapades of high school & waylon, erin & all their friends. who's in trouble & who's not. dont worry girls, i heard all about your days as well. my heartfelt sympathy to all of you & your families. lucky to have her as mom ∈ your lives. Great lady! may god give you peace and keep you safe. murph
christine murphy
Coworker
September 15, 2020
Lisa and Ken. We are so sorry to hear of the passing of Marilyn. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Duane & Deb Roling
September 15, 2020
I met Marilyn on a annual Chicago trip! Every year we looked forward to seeing her, she was witty, funny and a Very likeable woman! Will truly miss her but she will forever be in my heart❣
With deepest Sympathy Julie Becker
Julie Becker
Friend
September 14, 2020
Jackie, Laurie & Family ~ My deepest sympathies on the loss of your mother and grandmother. She sounded like an amazing woman who I'm sure was loved so very much. My God help you find strength during this time.
Beth Weepie
Coworker
September 14, 2020
Parker Peyton
Friend
September 14, 2020
Lisa so sorry about your mom. She was such a wonderful lady to talk to. I'm keeping you guys in my thoughts and prayers.
Barbara Glass
Friend
September 14, 2020
We are so sorry to hear about your mom. She was an awesome lady! May your wonderful memories of her bring you great comfort and peace in the days, months and years ahead.
Artie & Teresa Dudley
Friend
September 14, 2020
Eternal Affection Arrangement- BASKET INCLUDED
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Kim Miller
September 14, 2020
So sorry to here of Marilyn's passing She sounds like a wonderful person. My sympathies to Tracey and all of Marilyn's family.
Teresa Kopf
Classmate
September 13, 2020
Pamela O'Hare
Acquaintance
September 13, 2020
I met Marilyn a couple of times, I lived in the house next door to her apartment in Winthrop. Easter of 2018 she had fallen and I am so glad that I was their for her when she needed it! She was the kindest neighbor and so sweet! I am thinking of her family at this time! I know you will miss her, but know she talked about you guys all the time!!
Lacey Sauer
Neighbor
September 13, 2020
Spent many summer days sitting outside with Marilyn and the ladies. She made the best damn ham salad I had ever eaten. I loved her dearly. I'm so glad she is with her husband now. She missed him dearly.
Ila Doud
Neighbor
September 13, 2020
Marilyn was the sweetest lady. Sure gonna miss her waving at us when plow the snow or mow the lawn. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family.
Jason and Amber Childers
Friend
September 13, 2020
Such a wonderful tribute to Marilyn. She lived a full life and was loved dearly by so many people. We are so happy we got to be with her last November in Dubuque, it was such a joyous family gathering. We are so very sorry we can't attend the service as we will be driving to Oregon to take Amelia to college. Blessings and prayers to the entire extended family.
Terri Schantz
Family
September 13, 2020
Always a smile when greeting others. My sympathy to all of Marilyn's family on her passing. Heaven received a good soul.
Margaret Ownby
September 13, 2020
My deepest sympathies to the Whitney family. Marilyn was such a source of strength and encouragement. She helped my mother adjust to life's changes and challenges. Thank you Marilyn. It was an honor to know you.
Tammy Gudenkauf
Friend
September 12, 2020
I am so sorry to hear of Marilyn"s passing. I worked with her for 13 years at Triangle Plastics. She was always keeping us laughing out on the line. I have often thought about her over the years after I left Iowa. All of my prayers to her family. RIP my friend!
marilyn clendenen
Coworker
September 12, 2020
Such a sweet lady, always had a smile and loved to visit.
Nita VanLaningham
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