Marie is remembered by her grandson, Jon McDowall, as a very caring person, always involved in service to others. A determined lady, but also very family orientated. Another grandchild, Vicki Anderson, recalled in her eulogy for Marie, that she was a tremendous person, kind in spirit, giving, humble and tolerant.
Born in Invercargill, but raised in Gore, she worked as a nurse aide at the maternity hospital here. A great music lover, she also taught piano and gave lessons at home before her children were born.
Marie was married to Keith (“Squatter”) for thirty nine years and was the mother of 7 girls. The oldest four went to Gore High School, but once St Peter’s was open, the youngest three, Maureen, Robyn and Keithley were pupils here. Each year when it was time for the annual School Fair, Marie would contribute to the event by making sweets and coconut ice.
She was a staunch member of the Catholic Women’s League and attended mass every day when she was able and was always active in the parish. Other community organisations that she was involved with included East Gore Plunket, the Gore RSA Women’s Section and the Senior Citizens” Club.
Marie finally got her driving licence later in life, but achieved notoriety amongst her grandchildren for her hair raising driving technique. Grand daughter Vicki recalls that her little blue Honda was well known at the local panel beaters!
Marie has left her family with a host of happy memories, not least of the annual holidays in a crib at Kaka Point, where they would all gather for the quintessential Kiwi holiday.
With her eyesight failing, Marie spent the last eight years of her life, as a resident of Albany House Rest Home in Gore.