Friday, June 9, 2017
10:00 AM EDT
Calvary Church Chapel
707 East Beltline Ave NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
Friends are invited to visit with Marian's family from 9 AM until 9:45 AM.
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Calvary Church for The CHERA Ministry
707 East Beltline Ave NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
Chera (pronounced Ke-Ra) is the Greek word for “widowed” or “bereft.” Our mission is to reach out to those who have lost a spouse and offer the comfort which comes from God. Our members contact the newly-widowed to provide support by listening and offering friendship individually as well as meeting in small groups
Life Story / Obituary
A woman with enormous heart and a model for the spirituality of the Christian faith, Marian Mason leaves behind a beautiful legacy. She was a loving wife, a caring mother, and a cherished grandmother and friend to many. We will dearly miss her in this life.
The year of 1933 is marked in our history books as a time in which people all over the world were greatly impacted by the economy and the weather. This marked the worst year of the Great Depression with the unemployment rate peaking at over 25%. The weather did not help matters, as horrible drought conditions combined with strong winds created terrific dust bowls ruining crop production. Criminals faced a lock up in one of the newest, and certainly most interesting, federal penitentiaries of its time by the likes of Alcatraz. Thankfully, the invention of the Drive-in Movie Theater kept many minds distracted with the joys of entertainment found in a new way. Many couples attended these new venues to watch the premiere of the movie, "King Kong." The sweet and adorable Shirley Temple was a popular household name, and mom's everywhere were throwing the newly invented chocolate chip cookie recipe into their warm ovens.
Closer to home, in Albion, Michigan, Gerald and Helena (Lowe) Davis were preparing to meet their 3rd baby girl. Marian made her life's debut on October 11, 1933. Her two older sisters, Elizabeth and Margaret, helped welcome her home. Marian was not the youngest sister for long, as Barbara eventually joined in the fun too to complete the family. In a household full of girls, there was never a dull or quiet moment. Their home was full of happy chaos and the sisterly squabbles naturally found amongst a family of this size. The Davis family was raised with a strong Christian foundation in the Presbyterian Church which helped Marian navigate her way throughout her entire life.
Marian attended elementary school in Albion, and then Washington-Gardner High School is where she completed her secondary education. While she worked studiously to get good grades, she also held a couple of jobs. She took on the responsibility of delivering newspapers in Albion which made history because she was the first female to do so in her town. She also worked at the local dairy bar, and finally she graduated with the class of 1951. Upon earning her high school diploma, she continued her undergraduate studies at Western Michigan University where she obtained a degree in Medical Technology.
Life's adult responsibilities of obtaining a job led her to Grand Rapids. It was in this city where she fulfilled her internship in medical technology at Butterworth Hosptial. This was also the location where her heart found love. She and Robert Mason met on a blind date. Though their connection was not exactly love at first sight, Robert was persistent enough to make sure he eventually captivated her attention forever. The happy couple rang wedding bells in 1958 and spent their honeymoon traveling in the beautiful Rockies and the Canadian Rockies.
When the honeymoon was recorded in scrapbooks, the newlyweds turned to beginning their lives together. Marian continued working at the hospital for the next 20 years. Through unfortunate circumstances, Robert's parents passed away, leaving behind Robert's sisters who were still in high school. Robert and Marian's family quickly grew, as the couple promptly took in and cared for his sisters. Eventually, they celebrated children of their own when Donna, Robert and Derek were born. Their home on Comstock Blvd. NE was bursting at the seams with family love.
Marian was a hands-on mother, and she always supported her children in their various endeavors. She spent many hours in the classroom working as a room mother while they were in school. When it became apparent that working at the hospital and raising a family was too much, Marian decided to resign from her position and focus on her family instead. This freed some time for the family to take a few vacations. Sometimes they would travel to Iowa to visit Robert's friends. Eventually, the family moved to a different home located on Scenic View Drive in Grand Rapids Township where they stayed for several years.
Difficult times came upon Marian and her family when her beloved husband passed away. He died quite young, at the age of 51, leaving Marian to take care of the family on her own. She made it her mission to take care of Derek especially, as he was still in school at the time. With the support of loved ones, the family endured the hard times with the memories of Robert in their hearts. They looked to one another for comfort, and sometimes that comfort came in the form of late night video games together. Marian loved playing the Nintendo when she could not find sleep at night.
When it was time for Marian to go back to work, she found employment working as a teller at NBD where she stayed for 15 years. Upon retirement, Marian had several activities with which she became involved and most of them were for Christian organizations. The Calvary Church was a big influence on her life. She helped with the correspondence Bible Studies with the Crossroads Correctional Ministries. Close to her own heart, she also started a ministry for widows and widowers after Robert passed away. She planned events and activities for the Chera Ministry, and she was their dedicated director for about 20 years.
She was an organized planner, so these volunteer opportunities served her well.
In Marian's more idle times, she enjoyed working a crossword puzzle or two to keep her mind healthy. She was also quite talented with needlepoint and cross-stitch leaving behind many artifacts for her loved ones to cherish. She was also a member of the Wyoming Seniors who made time to frequent the bowling alley for a few rounds.
Everyone who knew Marian would agree that she had a big heart and lived her life with unwavering faith every day. When she was blessed with grandchildren, she modeled these values for them as well. Charla, Robert, Austin, and Alyssa held a special place in their grandmother's heart, as she loved to spoil them. She adored the special bonds she was able to share with her granddaughters, and she loved spending time with all four of them. This is not to say, however, that she did not share her true opinions with them about matters with which she disagreed. Marian always spoke her thoughts without any sugar -coating which was a blessing, for the way she felt was never a mystery. Ultimately, she was always present for her family, and everyone knew they could count on her support in life.
Marian's life began to become more difficult in the last 6 months or so. Her health took a turn, and when the diagnosis finally became apparent, she knew the future held promise. The promise was in the peace she gained knowing that she was preparing to go to her heavenly home because the diagnosis was severe. Sadly, we are forced to say goodbye to Marian L. Mason, as she went home to be with her Lord and Savior on June 6, 2017. Our memories of Marian will remain close to our hearts, and she will never be forgotten.
Mrs. Marian L. Mason, age 83, of Grand Rapids, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on June 6, 2017. She was preceded in death by her husband, Robert; as well as her sisters. Surviving are her children Donna Abson, Robert Mason, Derek Mason, 4 grandchildren: Charla (Andrew) Smith, Robert Mason Jr, Austin Mason and Alyssa Mason; as well as sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews. The service to celebrate Marian's life will be held on Friday, June 9, 2017 at 10 AM in the Chapel at Calvary Church, 707 East Beltline. Friends may visit with her family on Thursday evening at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home - Van Strien Creston Chapel, 1833 Plainfield Ave NE from 6-9 PM and on Friday at the church from 9 AM until the service. Interment in Rosedale Memorial Park. For those who wish, memorial contributions to Calvary Church for the Chera Ministry are appreciated. To read more about Marian's life, to share a memory or photo, or to sign her guestbook, visit www.lifestorynet.com