Marilyn Graham, who died at the age of 79, was the secretary at Knowlton Academy for more than 20 years and a volunteer at many non-profit groups from the Brome Fair to the Wellness Centre.
Her office, beside the principal on the main floor of the school, handled everything from first aid emergencies to answering calls from parents who might be calling in to report their child was sick.
“Most of all she was a mother figure to 350 to 400 children at the school, and even some of the adults,” said Steve Trew, the principal Marilyn worked with for most of her time at Knowlton Academy. “The children loved her. She was compassionate, caring and understanding. I thought of her as a friend rather than just a colleague.”
When David and Gayle Evans’s children went to Knowlton Academy they struck up a lifelong friendship with Marilyn and her husband.
“They didn’t have any children and they became members of our family and were included in everything,” said Gayle. “Marilyn had a strong work ethic and she was always working for one non-profit or another.
Marilyn was born in the Montreal suburb of Verdun. Her husband Eddy’s parents had a place in Bondville and they started coming out here to visit them. They bought a house in Brome Terrace and moved out to the Townships full time in the 1970s.
The Grahams moved to Brome Village, where they lived for the rest of their lives. After she retired from Knowlton Academy, Marilyn expanded her volunteer life
For many years she helped out with the administration at Brome Fair and was chairman of the Brome Lake Wellness Centre. The Wellness Volunteer Centre will honour Marilyn in the spring of 2017.
Marilyn died at the BMP Hospital on August 3. Her husband pre-deceased her.