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Marian Eatherton

Marian Eatherton

Marian Eatherton

- January 7, 2019

Marian Eatherton described herself as “a woman who wears many hats.”  And so she was.  Wife of 68 years to James A. Eatherton, mother of three daughters (Laurie, Debra, and Gwen), grandmother (David, Andy, and Jane), church organist, substitute teacher, piano teacher, Whitewood Elementary School music teacher, and feature writer for the Meade County Times-Tribune.

     Marian passed away Sunday, January 6, 2019, in Sturgis from complications resulting from fractured vertebrae that hospitalized her in October.

     Her life will be celebrated Friday, January 11, 2019, at 11:00 a.m. at the First Presbyterian Church, Sturgis, with a reception at the church to follow.

     Marian was born at home to Louise and Harlan Jenson on November 3, 1930, near Woonsocket, SD.  She attended the one-room Berlin School a mile west of Woonsocket from 1st through 8th grades.  She is a 1948 graduate of Sturgis High School and attended Black Hills State College.

     Marian and Jim were married July 16, 1950, at the Whitewood Presbyterian Church.  They built their home on Park Street in Whitewood next door to where he had grown up and near her parents.

     She was active in 4-H as a youth and helped start The Loyal Lassies club in Whitewood.  Her love of gardening and flowers, particularly roses she and Jim grew, led to annual entries in the Meade and Butte County Fairs.     Marian loved to sing and play piano, which she taught for 60 years.  After the girls had grown, she was a feature writer at the Meade County Times-Tribune.  In addition to penning a column of personal reflections called “Observations,” she especially enjoyed assignments that enabled her to interview motorcyclists during the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally and to be on the set during 1989’s production of Dances With Wolves.

     She was active in both the Whitewood and Sturgis Presbyterian churches, played piano and organ, and sang in their choirs.  She organized musical entertainment at the Sturgis Senior Center and sang in the center’s choir.

     Marian and Jim moved from Whitewood to their home on Fulton Street in Sturgis in 2015.

     Their daughter, Laurie, and husband, Jeff Warfel, reside in Yankton.  Deb and Ned Leonard live in Arlington, VA, and Gwen and David Brandfass in Sedona, AZ.

     She was preceded in death by her parents; sister, Mary Lou Teller; and half-sister, Helen Jean Personius.

     A memorial gift will be made to the South Dakota State University Department of Music.

     Condolences may be sent to the family at www.kinkadefunerals.com.


Phone number: 605-347-4455
E-mail: [email protected]
Address: 1612 Junction Avenue, Suite #1
Sturgis, SD 57785