Marjorie B. Cass, 95, of Fayette, died Wednesday, November 26, 2014, at Maple Crest Manor in Fayette.
Funeral services will be held 10:00 a.m. Monday, December 1, 2014, at the United Methodist Church in Fayette with Rev. Hyeunmee Kang officiating. Visitation will be held from 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. Sunday, November 30, at Becker-Milnes Funeral home in Fayette and for one hour preceding services at the church on Monday.
Marjorie Bernice Swales was born near Arlington, Iowa on September 10, 1919. Her father, John Swales was a farmer. Her mother Lura Hoisington Swales was a famer’s wife and pianist, playing for church and giving lessons to Marjorie and other children. Marjorie was the third of five siblings: Ruth Utter, Esther Holtzman, Marian Terrell, and Earl Swales. All but Sister Marian have preceded her in death.
Marjorie graduated from Stanley High School and attended Upper Iowa College in Fayette and taught school for a time in Illinois. She met future husband, Edward Jackley Cass at Upper Iowa where they both worked in the library. They were married on September 19, 1943, when they were married at the country church of Marjorie’s youth, Garden Prairie. Edward pastored seven different United Methodist Churches: Ledyard, Laurel, Popjoy & Lee Center, Melbourne, Hansel & Duncomb, Otho, and Hawkeye, Union & Alpha. Marjorie loved music, especially playing piano. She sometimes served as church pianist/organist and almost always sang in the choir. Marjorie completed her B.A. degree at Drake University as an adult. She worked briefly as a teacher’s assistant and for number of years as a nursing assistant, first at Friendship Haven in Fort Dodge and then at Maple Crest Manor in Fayette. In 1978, Edward retired, and he and Marjorie moved to Fayette, where they had met years earlier. Besides serving God and the church, the couple enjoyed camping and traveling, which they did for years with a car and tent, then long into their retirement—in a mobile home. Edward preceded Marjorie in death in 2008.
Marjorie and Edward had two daughters, MaDonna Sanpei and Ramona Cass. MaDonna married Edwin Matsui, and they have three adult children: Kari, Jason and Marcie. Marjorie has five great grandchildren: Liam & Teia (to Kari & Kieth DeBusca), Owen (to Jason Matsui & Jennifer Loomis), and Violet & Zoe (to Marcie & Adam Moura). MaDonna has remarried to Frank Sanpei, and they recently retired from Hawaii to Las Vegas, Nevada. Ramona is Director of Clinical Pastoral Education for Providence Health & Services in Los Angeles, California.
Marjorie was a dedicated care-giver for her husband when his health declined. He died in 2008. Just two months later, Marjorie fell and broke a hip, which precipitated a decline in her health and independence. Since then she has been a resident at Maple Crest Manor in Fayette, where she once helped care for others. For several years, Marjorie continued to play her piano in the lounge. Until recently, she has enjoyed outing on the bus and various activities with the staff and fellow residents. Since August 2014, Palmer Lutheran Hospice has cared for Marjorie, along with the Maple Crest staff.