She was born Sylvia Drucilla Arnce in August of 1939 to Sylvia Arnce Sr. Seventh of nine children, she always had a close bond with her family. As a child, Sylvia was driven, hardworking, ambitious and determined to rise above her humble beginnings. She started her first job at Nana's Cafe in Joplin Mo. before she was even 10 years old. When she was in elementary school, she moved with her family to Oregon. There, she continued her upward climb and graduated from Jefferson High School in 1957. Her career began at Kaiser Permanente but then with her Bachelor's degree in hand from Marylhurst College she became a research associate for Kaiser, a position she held until her retirement. Sylvia was a huge believer in higher education and having that degree was a huge accomplishment. She thrived in her career and was a well published research author.
In the early 1970s, Sylvia married Merril Marks and changed her name. Her and Merril were only married for a couple of years but remained lifelong friends.
After 29 years at Kaiser, she retired early to her beloved home on Mt. Tabor. She hosted countless family showers, holidays and picnics at her home. Her favorite being Christmas Eve. She joined the Mt. Tabor walking club and sat on the board of the Oregon Symphony where she helped with meetings and fundraising. She traveled the world with her family and friends and she never stopped learning. She kept up on family news and was always excited to hear how her many nieces and nephews were doing. Sylvia was passionate about animals and found joy caring for the birds and the squirrels on Mt. Tabor. However, it was her cats that truly commanded her heart. She provided a loving home for countless felines over the years.
Sylvia D. Marks passed away on October 23, at the age of 83.
She will be laid to rest at Mt Zion Cemetery in Estacada Oregon close to her dear sister Pauleene.
Sylvia was preceded in death by her mother Sylvia, her Aunt Ines, and her siblings Roberta, Don, Bob, George and Pauleene. She is survived by her sisters Jeanie Thurston of Nebraska, Billie Jenkins of Missouri, brother Ron Arnce Sr. of Oregon and numerous nieces, nephews and grands from coast to coast.
We celebrate you today, Aunt Sylvia, we celebrate a life well lived.
So, cheers to the ones here today and cheers to the ones that we've lost on the way.
We will miss you always.