The sunshine to her family, Marilyn Pletcher was always smiling. She was loving, caring, and loved to laugh. Marilyn being a hard worker, not only took care of her husband and her five children with making breakfast and having dinner ready every night, but she also still found time to work outside of the home.
Marilyn J. Wilkinson was born on August 14, 1935 on the family farmhouse off Etna Road in rural Whitley County, Indiana. During this same year news around the country was headlined with Amelia Earhart’s solo flight across the Pacific Ocean, Parker Brothers release the game Monopoly, and nylon was first introduced. Growing up with seven siblings, they had lived on a few farms in Whitley County. With her brothers having chores of milking cows, Marilyn bartered with her brother Larry that she would milk his cow in trade for time to ride his bicycle.
Being involved with 4-H, Marilyn and a friend were sitting under a tree in the summer of 1948 when her life would be forever changed. Emmett Pletcher and a friend spotted the girls under the tree and approached them to take their photo. This would be a photo that Emmett would cherish for a lifetime. They continued to stay in touch over the next several years and taking any opportunity to watch a movie at the theater together. Marilyn attended Larwill High School where she was in the school band and a cheerleader.
On August 23, 1952, Marilyn and Emmett were married. They made the small town of Tunker southwest of Columbia City their home and raised their children there. Marilyn started her adult work career even before she was 18. Aside from working on the family farm, she took a job cleaning Smith & Son Funeral Home when she was 17 and after marriage, she worked at Heine Turkey Farm and then Plastic Veneering near their home in Tunker. With an enjoyment of gardening, Marilyn worked at Frank’s Greenhouse before working several years at both the Carriage House Flowers & Gifts in Columbia City and South Whitley Flowers before retiring.
Marilyn was a member of New Hope Wesleyan Church and was a charter member of the Homemaker's Extension Club 21 in Washington Township. She also enjoyed crocheting afghans, chocolate candy making with her family, babysitting, camping and traveling. Marilyn and Emmet were blessed with 68 years of marriage together, the opportunity to visit all 50 states in the United States, and enjoyed many vacations making numerous memories. Above all, Marilyn loved all her family and adored her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Marilyn J. Pletcher, 85, formerly of Tunker, passed away on Thursday, March 11, 2021 at her home on Hoffman Lake in Warsaw. She is survived by her loving husband, Emmett Pletcher, daughters, Cheryl (Bob) Huffman and Carolyn Pletcher; sons, Doug (Rowena) Pletcher, Gene (Angie) Pletcher, and Roger (Debbie) Pletcher; sister, Joyce (Dale) Lawrence; 9 grandchildren; and 13 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; sister, Donna Martz and brothers, Galen Wilkinson, Larry Wilkinson, Dayne Wilkinson, Max Wilkinson and Carroll Wilkinson.
Visitation is 3 to 7 pm, Monday, March 15, 2021 at DeMoney-Grimes Funeral Home, 600 Countryside Drive, Columbia City. Face masks are required for attendance. Funeral services will be 10 am Tuesday at the funeral home with Pastor Shane Wilson officiating. Burial will take place at South Whitley Cemetery. Memorial donations may be given in memory to New Hope Wesleyan Church, Alzheimer's Association or Heartland Hospice. Visit www.DeMoneyGrimes.com to send Marilyn's family online condolences or sign the online guest book.
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