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MaryLind Mulder ANDRESEN


1929 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
MaryLind Mulder ANDRESEN Obituary
MaryLind Mulder Andresen, 88, of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, died on May 12, 2018. A businesswoman, musician, wife and mother, she was born on June 3, 1929 in Muskegon, Michigan, and attended Muskegon High School and Smith College, graduating in 1950. Throughout her life, she spent summers at her family's cottage overlooking White Lake, near Muskegon. In her youth, she was an avid competitive sailor in the E-Scow fleet of the White Lake Yacht Club, where her father served as Commodore. The Mulders were a musical family, and MaryLind reveled in music. In addition to having a wonderful singing voice (and for a time, a professional singing career), she played both piano and bass until her final years. In 1950, MaryLind took off alone on an 18-month trip to Italy, traveling third class from New York to Naples on the MS Vulcania. The Sixth Fleet of the United States Navy had established its headquarters in the Bay of Naples earlier that year, and the blonde, blue-eyed young woman from Michigan was an inspiration to its young officers. She settled in Florence, where she studied singing, the Italian Renaissance and the Italian language. Postwar austerity in Italy failed to dampen her enthusiasm for the country or its people. Florence had begun once again to attract legions of artists, students and bons vivants from around the world, and the opera, cinema and cafes were thriving. She often joined an international gathering of young people at the rooftop bar of the Hotel Baglioni, where she developed a lifelong fondness for Campari and soda. MaryLind returned to the United States in 1952, working as a secretary at the Metropolitan Opera Guild in New York and occasionally accepting modeling assignments. After a brief, unsuccessful marriage to a Wall Street lawyer, she embarked on a professional singing career of her own, landing a job with Musicarnival in Cleveland. During an intermission in a performance of Carousel, she was introduced to J?rgen Andresen, a young engineer who had just arrived from Copenhagen and was working nearby at Lincoln Electric. He soon proposed to MaryLind over strawberry pie at Testa's Restaurant in Palm Beach. He was so nervous that he tipped the piano player ten times the usual amount to play his favorite American tune, "Sweet Georgia Brown," during the proposal. (For years afterwards, whenever Andresen came into Testa's, the piano player immediately broke into "Sweet Georgia Brown.") MaryLind and J?rgen married in February 1959, settling in Shaker Heights, Ohio, where they raised two daughters, Lisa and Ingrid. Both MaryLind and J?rgen dreamed of one day living in Florida, and in 1970, the family moved to Fort Lauderdale. In 1976, J?rgen and MaryLind founded Danish Furniture Center Inc., a store specializing in the innovative designs of his native country. He died suddenly at the age of 47 in 1980. With little or no business experience, MaryLind took over Danish Furniture Center and ran it profitably with her daughter Lisa for more than 30 years. She became a leading light in the close-knit Scandinavian furniture industry, and for decades, Fort Lauderdale was a key destination for Denmark's top furniture designers and manufacturers. In the 1980's, MaryLind reconnected with a high school sweetheart from Muskegon, Walker McKinney, who also had been one of the young officers of the Sixth Fleet in 1950. They traveled much of the world together, venturing to India, Japan, East Africa, the Caribbean, Southeast Asia, the Nordic countries and the Middle East until he died in 2000. MaryLind also returned many times to her beloved Italy, enthusiastically guiding her grandchildren around the country in 2005. MaryLind Andresen loved music, art, travel, White Lake and all things Italian. She will be remembered for her beauty, elegance, kindness, good humor, common sense and marvelous singing voice, and as a loving mother and a true friend. She is survived by her two daughters, Lisa (Duff) Peterson and Ingrid Lindfors, and five grandchildren: J?rgen Walker Peterson, of Tokyo; Anders David Peterson, of Newport Beach, California; Anna Lind Peterson, of New York; Mats Carl Lindfors, of Newport, Rhode Island; and Katja Lind Lindfors, of Thousand Oaks, California. A memorial service will be held at White Lake during the summer of 2018. Memorials may be made to Evanston Symphony Orchestra, P.O. Box 778, Evanston, IL 60204. Info: www.donnellanfuneral.com or (847) 675-1990
Published in The Palm Beach Daily News on May 27, 2018
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