Marilyn would read through this section on a daily basis just to see if she was in it. Instead of her reading this today, we are celebrating her with you as she finally finished her dance on earth on December 18th.
Marilyn Jeanne Haddix made her first debut onto the world's stage on August 17, 1934. She grew up as a shy girl in Dallas TX. Her parents, Ben and Earlene Haddix did not let her shyness get in the way of doing what she loved. She loved to dance, especially in tap shoes and would continue to dance throughout her life even if it was just in the kitchen in front of her 9 children or any of her 34 grandchildren. I'm sure she would have danced for any or all of her 66 great grandchildren had she been given the opportunity.
Her mind was just as brilliant as any dance performance as she would graduate from Woodrow Wilson High School in the top 10% of her class at the age of 16 . She loved playing Boggle and Scramble with anyone who would play with her. And whatever game she was playing, she made sure she and her opponent were having fun. Her mind was quick with numbers and full of information.
This is where Marilyn would tell us to stop. She was not one to seek attention but she was always one to make sure everyone else had the attention they deserved. That each person knew that they were loved and were special-- so we will not stop, instead we will continue to celebrate her just as she celebrated others.
Marilyn proved that although only standing 5ft tall, she would take down anything that stood in her way. She cared for her oldest five children (Don and his wife Donie, Cheryl and her husband Bryon, David and his wife Ilene, Bill and his wife Bambi, and Jerry and his wife Shelly) as a single mom with two jobs until she saw a cute man at a local dance. Norman Hassett fell for her quickly. They were married just 2 short months later and added five more children to their family (Norm's son Chris, Mike and his wife Lisa, Denise, Jeff and his wife Codi Jo, and Alicia and her husband Jason).
As if having 10 children wasn't enough adventure, they lived in 5 different states and too many houses to count before finally settling in Bountiful, Utah. She worked her way up the ranks at the telephone company beginning as an operator and ending as the first female engineer (yes, she even climbed a telephone pole to fix wires). Her determination to just do what needed to be done would be passed on through her family.
Marilyn easily made friends wherever she went. She loved supporting her kids in wrestling, football, baseball, debate, theater, choir, soccer, police service, military service, and in the start of their own families. Thankfully, although her children may not have picked up the love for dancing on stage her grandchildren and great grandchildren still carry the torch for her through dance. Her ease of conversation and ability to get a room erupt into laughter continued as the staff of Chancellor Gardens, her last home, took great care of her.
While serving a mission on the Navajo Reservation in Arizona, Marilyn and Norm decided to stay and serve. Her love for the people she met and experiences she had while living there stayed with her even through her struggle with Alzheimers. While there, they met a young, energetic boy named Anthony who melted their hearts. He would join the family when they finally returned to Utah. Her face would light up as she would remember the people she met during her time there.
Marilyn's stories were enjoyed by all. Over the last few years they became more colorful and more meaningful as she would recount her experiences through wars, new inventions, and history through a young girl's eyes. No one cared to fact check her as the stories were just entertaining and everyone loved listening to them.
Although her stories were memorable, the most remarkable memories she gave us were those of service. The carnations she would take to the women in the neighborhood, the time she would give at the Care Center for those struggling with their own mortality, taking care of her own parents, volunteering in school classrooms, the countless hours in service through the LDS Church. Each person she met knew they were loved because she gave them her time and attention and would always remember their name. She left a legacy of service as that was always what took precedence in her life.
She loved all of her family, she loved her Savior Jesus Christ, she loved serving as a missionary for the LDS church, she loved dancing, crocheting, and laughing. Her love for life and others was immediately noticed when she walked into a room.
There will not be a "survived by" section as she would most assuredly tell us that she was the one that survived all of us. Sufficeth to say that there are many children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins, neighbors, and life long friends and of course her sweetheart Norm who will dearly miss her. We are sure that her parents Ben and Earlene, her sister Beverly Badgett, her daughter-in-law Ilene Bishop, her grandson Robert Chatterton, and great grandson RyKer Bishop as well as her beloved uncles, cousins, and grandparents welcomed her home. She often said that she knew her Heavenly Father hadn't taken her home yet because he wasn't ready for what she had to say. Well, we are sure that whatever she is saying, she and many others are rejoicing and having a grand old time.
As her children, we kept her busy. And though she would tell us how much she loved us and that we were generally good kids, bless our hearts, we may not have been the most obedient. However, the last thing she asked of us was not to have a memorial service at her passing. This time, we all have agreed to obey her final request; that on her "life bed" we would celebrate her life and not hold a memorial service. And as you read this, in her own words she asks one thing of you as you learn of her passing, "if by chance you wish to remember me, do it by a kind word or deed to someone who needs it."