Marilyn, 88, from Brookdale South Port Square in Port Charlotte, FL, is a very giving, caring and intellectual individual. While grieving her husband’s recent death, Marilyn realized that she had not mourned her brother’s death. Marilyn lived in a different state when her brother, Charles, was undergoing a heart transplant. Due to family obligations, she was unable to be there for her brother as much as she would have liked prior to his passing. Charles served as the president of Harley Davidson at the time the company went public. Ever since Marilyn found out that the Harley Davidson Museum has pictures of her brother in one of their exhibits, she had wanted to visit to connect with him and find closure.
Marilyn has put service before self her entire life, and she always gave back to her community. She has served as a social worker and as president of PEO woman’s group. Furthermore, she is the founder of a local program called STAIR (Start The Adventure In Reading), whose mission it is to improve the reading skills and self-esteem of lower elementary school students in the local area. Marilyn has also been the moderator and chair of a fundraising committee for the church and community center, and served as the council president of her residence community.
Thanks to Brookdale Senior Living and Wish of a Lifetime, Marilyn’s wish came true from July 13th-17th, 2017. On July 15th, Marilyn and her daughter, Joy, traveled to Milwaukee, WI to visit the Harley Davidson Museum where Marilyn was able to pay tribute to her brother. When her son went on a trip to the museum, he saw a giant picture of Marilyn’s brother and told her about it, which inspired her desire to see the museum. “There is no grave site for my brother. To me this is a memorial place for me to connect with my brother,” she said. Marilyn also had the opportunity to visit a nearby cemetery in honor of her parent and grieve Charles’s death with her family in Wisconsin. Marilyn said, “The trip really did bring closure as I had hoped. I saw pictures of Charlie that I had never seen, and enjoyed seeing him pictured at work with other Harley people I had met through the years.”
Photo credit: Debbie Borth, Camera Kisses Photography