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Marion Springer Edmunds died on Friday, February 9, 2024, with family around her. She was born August 20, 1924, in Syracuse, NY, and moved to Mt. Lebanon during high school, where she lived the rest of her life. She was preceded in death by her husband of 71 years Chet, her daughter Lindsay, her parents J. Hall and Helen Springer, and her sister Marilyn Harrison.
Marion is survived by her son David, granddaughters Claire and Brynn (Daniel Bird), sister-in-law Arlene Edmunds, nephews Robert (Susan) and John (Sherri) Harrison, and nieces Pamela Gordon (Geoff), Cyndi Keith, Cathy Coon, Christine Kemper (Chris), Adrienne Edmunds Weil (Michael), and Karen Edmunds.
Marion’s early years were in Syracuse, some of which were spent on a farm where she rode horses and played with the family dogs. Her grandfather bought a cottage on Otisco Lake where her family spent their summers. She never lost her love of it, such that after moving to Pittsburgh she continued to spend summers there the rest of her life. She graduated from Mt. Lebanon High School in 1940 and attended Chatham College for her undergraduate work, followed by getting her Masters Degree in Chemistry at Carnegie Tech, all of which she accomplished by the age of 20, this during an era where it was uncommon for women to attend college at all. While there she met her future husband Chet when they carpooled to classes together. They both graduated with degrees in Chemistry and were married on December 29, 1950, while Chet was on a Christmas pass from the Army, having served during the Korean War. They lived in Dothan, Alabama, while Chet finished his Army service.
Marion took a job as a chemist with the Bureau of Mines in Bruceton, PA, which later became part of the Department of Energy. She worked there her entire career with the exception of about a fifteen year gap when she stayed home to raise her children when they were younger. During that time she worked at several part time jobs, including as a substitute teacher. She was devoted to her family and felt strongly about maintaining traditions with her parents and sister, who all lived in Mt. Lebanon as well. Though she was born in the 1920s and honored traditional ways, she was not afraid of modernity and at 99 she stayed close to friends and family using email and Facebook.
Marion’s fondest memories were of summers at Otisco Lake in the cottage, crowded with extended family. She maintained her relationships with her childhood friends from there her entire life. She had many stories about summer life in the 1920s and 1930s, full of blacksmiths and their dogs, picnics and hikes, and swimming and ice cream. She won swimming and life saving competitions among her various athletic accomplishments. Even well into her 80s she enjoyed sitting on the porch talking with neighbors, playing games and doing puzzles with her family, and using the old cookware to make treats for everyone.
Marion was a longtime member of Christ United Methodist Church in Bethel Park. Her faith was important to her, and carried over into her greatest roles as wife, mother and grandmother, in which she was always generous and patient. She and Chet valued education, both formal and informal, and encouraged and facilitated this for their children and grandchildren.
Christmases were a major production in her household, and her family grew up fondly remembering the magic that she and Chet put into every holiday season by ornamenting enormous Christmas trees, arranging many inside decorations, and baking countless Christmas cookies (everyone had to have their favorite). She never lost sight of the meaning of the holiday, and Christmas began on Christmas Eve and went until Twelfth Night, an idea now that seems very old-fashioned.
We are grateful to Commonwealth Hospice for their loving and compassionate care. Memorial donations could be made to the Otisco Lake Preservation Association, Box 207, Marietta, NY 13110.
Family and friends may gather on Thursday afternoon, February 15th at Laughlin Cremation & Funeral Tributes, 222 Washington Road, Mt. Lebanon from 1:00 until the Funeral Ceremony at 4:00 o’clock.