Marjorie was born on September 20, 1943 in Tulsa, Oklahoma to parents George and Lois (Holliman) Brown and the younger sister of Brenda. In 1952 the family moved to Houston, Texas where Mr. Brown worked as an accountant with a major oil company and Mrs. Brown managed the Credit Union for the same company. Marjorie attended Alexander Hamilton Junior-High School and John H. Reagan High School, both in the Heights area of Houston, graduating with the class of 1961. She was a member of the prestigious Redcoats Drum and Bugle Corp at Reagan High.
Marjorie attended Sam Houston State Teachers College in Huntsville, Texas graduating with the Class of 1965 with a BA degree in English and Education, and certified by the State of Texas to teach in public schools. With that certification she returned to Alexander Hamilton Junior-High where she taught English for eight years, being honored as Teacher of the Year in 1969. During the 1962 summer vacation at home from college, Marjorie worked as a “Trigerette” usher for the Houston Colt 45’s Major League Baseball team.
While a student at SHSTC Marjorie pledged Alpha Chi Omega Sorority beginning a lifetime of sisterhood and friendships that has included annual vacations at Texas Gulf Coast beach houses and extended nationwide visits to many cities of historic and cultural interest. Those “sisters” and dear friends are Gretchen James, Beth Richardson, Billie Lemon, Nancy Wycoff, Sandra McCraray, Vickie Symington, Nancy Michel, with Pat Eversole being the first to predecease them. Those friendships were on the level of a close family who were in constant contact about even the most menial of their activities, and those of their children and spouses. They all are voracious readers and recommended books flow freely between them. Never did any special occasion go by that there were not visits, phone calls, letters, cards and gifts being exchanged. They all truly loved, and looked after, one another.
Marjorie, with her husband and daughter, moved to Lufkin in 1974 where she worked as manager of her husband’s office until their retirements in 2011, with a one year break to teach English to senior students at Diboll High School.
Marjorie was a person of many interests, with attention to her family being paramount. She was a founding member of the Angelina Photographic Association (APA) and was the glue that bound the enormous effort by APA for their One Day in the Life of Angelina County project in 1989. Those many interests, as well as a profile of her demeanor, was best expressed by her daughter Rebecca in a recent social media posting that read as follows:
“She was a trooper in every sense of the word! There was not a plant she couldn’t grow and didn’t know the name of. She had a way with animals, was a voracious reader and was good with power tools. She loved music, photography, and art and was quite talented at them all. She was an amazing cook, seamstress, teacher, wife, mother, sister, aunt, cousin, and friend. She was one of those people you couldn’t say a bad thing about. She was loved by many and will be greatly missed.”
Marjorie died on July 17, 2020 in the comfort of her home in Lufkin, Texas, with immediate family nearby. She is survived by her husband of fifty-four years Claude E. Welch; her daughter Rebecca Welch Calahan and son-in-law John Calahan of Nacogdoches Texas; her sister Brenda Brown Baggett and husband Dr. Ronald W. Baggett M. D. of Greenbriar, Arkansas; sister-in-law Margie Welch Ballard and her husband Hulon Ballard of Woden, Texas; nephew Mark Baggett and his wife Dana Baggett of Maumelle, Arkansas; nieces Sharon Amberger and husband Brad Amberger of Ft. Worth, Texas; Jeri Meredith and husband Hardy Meredith of San Augustine, Texas; and Jana Poole and husband David Poole of League City, Texas; and her great nieces and nephews, cousins, and other relatives.
Marjorie is also survived by her special friends Barbara Gale Morris, Judith Carlton Hill, Mary Pearl Goodwin, Robin Goodwin Collmorgen, Judith Guthrie, Mona Hill, Frances Kelley Parrish, Lynn Courtney, Morris Benton Parrish, Morgan Phillips Neighbors, Cecelia Gamez, Francisco Rocha, Judy Beard, Susan Garrett, Rebecca Hannah, Reyna Moss and her closest Pine Tree Lane neighbors.
Marjorie also requested that appreciation of her local attending physicians, and their staffs, be expressed to: Dr. James E. Saxton, Dr. Steven L. Feld, Dr. Kavitha J. Pinnamaneni and Dr. Jose A. Capellan for their caring and professional medical services.
For those wishing to make a contribution in honor and memory of Marjorie she has requested that consideration be given to either, or both, Wendy’s Misfits Animal Rescue, P O Box 3246 Lufkin, Texas 75903 and Neighborhood STRONG, 211 E. Shepherd Avenue, Suite 110, Lufkin Texas 75901. Those are two local public service organizations that Marjorie has appreciated and supported their efforts.
Per Marjorie’s specific instructions there will be no formal services. Instead, there will be scheduled on a later date a celebration of her life, with a sharing of memories and her good friend Nita Hurley to sing “Somewhere Over The Rainbow."
Shafer Funeral Home, Lufkin directors.
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