Towne, Marlene Jane (Martin), Saginaw, Michigan

Passed away Sunday, May 11, 2014 at the James E. Cartwright care Center at the age of 74 years. Born on a warm November 10, 1939, at her parents' home on Farragut Street in Bay City, Michigan, Marlene Jane Martin began her life at the beginning of World War 2 with siblings Ronald Martin and Corette (Forster). Ed and Alice Martin had no idea she would eventually grow to be a loving, hardworking wife to Richard Ford Towne for 53 years. She attended school in Bay City, including one and a half years at Bay City Community College. Marlene met Richard Towne of Saginaw in 1957, and soon fell in love. Richard and Marlene were married on Sept. 23, 1961 after Richard got the courage to ask Ed Martin for her hand in marriage. Soon after, Richard and Marlene began a family, welcoming Pamela Jill, Steven Richard, and Mitchell Martin Towne into the world. This is when Marlene started her song writing. She would write songs for each of her children discovering she enjoyed writing songs, poems, and short stories. She did so for the rest of her life. One of her songs was performed by the children of Trinity Lutheran of Bay City, where her son Steven is a teacher. She became well known for her Christmas Poems and stories she sent. She enjoyed knitting and sewing, making hats, gloves, sweaters, and many other items knitted with love for her kids and grandkids. Richard and Marlene loved camping and passed that love on to their children and grandchildren. As a young family, many memories began in the little camper they named the "Towne Haul". Marlene was known as an excellent cook, even though she was famous for never making a recipe the same way twice. She spent a lot of time trying to figure out her mother Alice Martins' "recipes", always coming up with something delicious. A family favorite was her homemade chocolate sauce that would harden over ice cream and was so chewy that it became responsible for several neighborhood kids' tooth extractions over the years. Marlene loved photography, especially on the annual fall color tour with Richard. She also loved movies, and would stay up late with her kids and their friends, enjoying every minute of it. Marlene held several jobs, but found her niche working as the church secretary for St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Saginaw Michigan. During her 28 year career as a secretary at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, she was responsible for "breaking in" seven different Pastors. Also during her career there, and after her retirement, Marlene was involved in various church and school groups and organizations. One of her favorites was the "Read Program". Marlene was the director of this program until her eventual battle with cancer prevented her from continuing. The Read Program was very important to her and she poured her heart into it. In the process she helped many children develop a love of reading. Children were an important focus in Marlene’s life. Marlene always set aside the time her children needed. Her children, their friends, her nieces and nephews, the school kids at St. Paul's and all the children that ever wanted her help were a top priority. This priority translated into her tremendous love for her seven grandchildren. Richard and Marlene not only made it to seemingly every sporting event, band concert, choir concert, show group, spelling bee, or school play of their children, but also their grandchildren. Marlene was well loved and will be missed by many. Her strong faith in God, which she instilled in her family, was a comfort to her, her friends, and her family at the end of her earthly life giving us the blessed assurance that the Father will call us to our heavenly home as he has called her. Funeral service will take place on Friday May 16, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Paul’s Ev. Lutheran Church, 1020 Court St. Rev. Carl Otto and Rev. William Brassow will officiate. Private committal service will take place in Floral Gardens. Friends may call at the W. L. Case and Company Funeral Chapel on Thursday from 2:00-4:00 p.m. and 6:00-8:00 p.m. and then at the church on Friday from 10:00 a.m. until the time of the funeral service. Those planning an expression of sympathy may wish to consider St. Paul Read Program or the American Cancer Society.