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Marion Edith Zimmerman

1922 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Marion Edith Zimmerman Obituary
Marion Edith Zimmerman

AGE: 94 • Greenville

Passed away, Thursday, December 29, 2016 at Compassionate Care Hospice at St. Francis Hospital in Wilmington.

Marion was born in 1922 in Queens, New York, the daughter of David and Rose (Finkelstein) Arbeit. She graduated from Queens College in 1943, majoring in Spanish, French, and Education. After spending a summer with her extended family in Mexico City and studying at the University of Mexico, she increased her proficiency in Spanish. She later worked for the U.S. Office of Censorship at the War Department during World War II, inspecting letters written in Spanish.

A friend introduced her to Joe in August 1947. They were married in June 1948. In 1950, after Joe received his PhD in Chemistry from Columbia University, they moved to Wilmington, where Joe began a long career at DuPont (Fibers). Their first son, Neil, was born that year. Two more children followed, Donna in 1952 and Steven in 1953. The family joined Congregation Beth Emeth in 1956 and have been members ever since.

She spent many years as a devoted mother, homemaker, and volunteer, and was very active in the Wilmington Chapter of Hadassah, serving as chapter president. In 1968, she started a 15-year career in education, teaching Spanish at Claymont High School while completing a Masters degree in Education at the University of Delaware. After additional graduate work in Library Science, she became the Librarian at Claymont High. In retirement, she continued working as a volunteer librarian at the A.I. DuPont Institute (Nemours) for 20 years, where she kept the doctors in line if they kept books too long.

Marion loved to travel, and spent many summers visiting Europe, eastern Asia, Israel, Mexico, the Caribbean, and much of the U.S. She began pursuing her artistic avocation in 1977 while at a summer music workshop with Joe. Her primary medium was acrylics. Many of her beautiful paintings adorn the walls of their house and their children's houses.

She joined the Academy of Lifelong Learning (now the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute) and spent 25 years pursuing her interests in art and other subjects there.

She is survived by Joe; her sister, Harriet Robbins Lane; sister-in-law, Shirley Zimmerman; children, Neil (Debbie), Donna Herbert (Steve), and Steven (Laurie Ross); and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Marion will be remembered for her dedication to justice and Judaism, as well as her quick wit and loving nature.

Funeral services will be 2:00 pm. Sunday, January 1, 2017 at Congregation Beth Emeth, 300 W. Lea Boulevard, Wilmington, DE 19802. Shiva will be observed at the late residence, 5:00 P.M. on January 1 and 7:00 P.M. on January 2 and 3. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Hadassah ( or Congregation Beth Emeth (


Published in The News Journal from Dec. 30, 2016 to Jan. 1, 2017
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