Margaret “Margie” R. Angell, 96, died in the Health Services Center of Pilgrim Place, Claremont, California in Sept. 2009. Her Memorial Service was held on Nov. 6, 2009 in Decker Hall of the retirement community where she had lived since 1986.
The service combined elements of both her Quaker heritage and her connection with the United Church of Christ. Margie was born in August 1913 in Long lsland, New York to Dr. and Mrs. Canby Robinson.
Her father, a Quaker and dedicated medical professional who founded the first modern medical school with an associated hospital (Vanderbilt University), encouraged her to be all that she could be. His “touchstone was integrity and caring.”
Her mother also gave her permission to explore her potential for theatre. Margie began writing and performing her own plays and poetry at an early age and continued throughout her life. A turning point in Margie’s life came when in her sophomore year at Bennington College she spent a year traveling in China where her father was a visiting professor at Peking Union Medical Center. As a result of that experience she changed her focus to social studies and peacemaking. During the Great Depression she accepted a job with the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. This confirmed her Quaker convictions that peace and non-violence were where she would put her energies.
After marrying Russell Angell in 1942, raising 3 daughters, being a supportive Congregational minister’s wife, and actively participating in Church Women United took up the early years of her marriage. 1970 found her in Massachusetts where she coordinated the Interfaith Project at the Worcester Age Center. She connected volunteers with people newly released from mental hospitals. This effort led to a position with the Department of Mental Health where she organized conferences on “The Religious Community and the Elderly.”
After retiring with her husband in 1986 to Pilgrim Place, Margie continued to find ways to express her love and compassion. She was also an active participant in the local United Nations Association, the weekly Prayer Vigils for Peace, and attended both Claremont Friends Meeting and services in the Health Services Center. Said one admirer, “You can get a tan off her radiance.” She was truly able to see “that of God” in each person she encountered.
Margie is survived by her daughters and sons-in-law, Marion “Mannie” Garza & Kim Ward, Barbara Hildt & Alan MacGregor & Carol Angell; her grandchildren, Carlos & Mariel Tarza, Natalie, Michael & Simon Hildt & Sara Angell-lsom; her great-grandchildren Elise & Nicolas Garza & Della Hildt; and by numerous extended family members.