MORGAN, Martha Emma Louise (née Coorssen)
The family of Martha Morgan of Saskatoon is deeply saddened to announce her death Feb. 3, 2014 at the age of 92 after a brief illness. An award-winning writer with a generous, optimistic spirit, Martha had a loyal following for her Notes From Over The Hill books and columns of wit and wisdom for seniors, carried by more than a dozen weekly newspapers on the Prairies and in Ontario. She is survived by five children: Paul (Lucianne Lavoie) of Edmonton; Katherine (Terry Ranson) of Burnaby, B.C.; Barry (Janice Theberge) of Saskatoon; James (Therese Cochlin) of Ucluelet, B.C.; Wanda (Gilbert Lonechild) of Carlyle, Sask.; by daughter-in-law Sybil Morgan of Saskatoon; and by six grandchildren and one great-grandson: Shaun MacMillan and Ryan MacMillan of Vancouver, Erin Morgan (Guy-Philippe Bouchard) and son Ovila of Montreal, Lisa Morgan of Saskatoon, and Tyrone McAllister of Toronto and James McAllister of Carlyle. Martha was predeceased by infant daughter Carol Anne in 1963, her husband, Dr. Joseph Morgan of Saskatoon, in 1976 and son Neil in 1984. Martha was born in Bremen, Germany, October 4, 1921, and moved with her parents to Newmarket, Ont., in 1929. She married Joseph Morgan in 1947 in Toronto and the growing family also lived in Ottawa before heading west in 1962, as Joseph Morgan headed up the Cancer Research Institute at the University of Saskatchewan. With the children largely grown by the 1980s, Martha sold real estate for several years, then took the plunge into freelance writing and quickly found her niche. She began with "true romance"-style stories for magazines such as Chatelaine before moving to radio plays for CBC Saskatchewan and ultimately "The Medicine Show," broadcast nationwide on CBC's Morningside. She also wrote for television, notably the drama "The War Bride," which won a Saskatchewan Film and Video Showcase Award for Best Script at the Yorkton Short Film and Video Festival in 1986. She was at times a member of ACTRA, the Canadian Authors' Association, the Saskatchewan Writers Guild and the Faculty Wives Club in Saskatoon. Martha moved to Cudworth in 1990 and very much enjoyed her new surroundings and the townspeople, soon launching the popular "Over The Hill" column of reminiscences, musings on modern life and aging, and exploiting her children's misadventures for publication - though she assured us we should be proud to be the "inspiration" behind her success. The Morgan household was a hangout for neighbourhood kids and was dominated by an ever-changing menagerie of weird or dysfunctional pets, often acquired by the children and left to Martha to manage, which she did lovingly. She never took herself seriously and acknowledged that an uncluttered household would just have to wait until she got herself organized, one of these days. But she took her writing very seriously, was justifiably proud of her accomplishments and wished she had started writing earlier. More computer-literate than most people half her age, in her late eighties she busied herself compiling a second book of her columns, and she amazed and inspired us by casually jumping on the bus to give readings around the province. In 2005 she moved to Luther Tower in Saskatoon, then to Luther Special Care Home last fall. She will be sadly missed. At Martha's request, there will be no funeral service. A private family memorial is being planned for a later date. The "Martha stories" have stopped, but her memory will live on in the hearts of those of us who loved her. To send online condolences, visit www.parkfuneral.ca
"Obituaries & Tributes". Funeral arrangements entrusted to Derryl Hildebrandt, Park Funeral Chapel, 306.244.2103.