Marion Darling

Rhody Family Funeral Home

May “Marion” was born May 23, 1927 in Sullivan Township, on Sharonview Farms to Seda Wilhmina (Klages) and Edward Henry Myers. Six years later, Marion was joined by “Donald” Aubrey Henry in 1933. At the age of 12, Marion went to stay with her Uncle Jack and Aunt Lydia (Myers) Glasser and family in Chesley. There she and the three Glasser girls, Marjorie, Bernice and June, became as close as sisters. Great stories were told of going to Norm’s Fish and Chips in Hanover after bowling. However, her Uncle Norm Meyer was a Police Officer and upon observing the girls on the street corner they were forbidden to go there again.

Opportunities for factory work, that were a result of WWII, enticed Marion to move to the big city. At the tender age of sixteen or seventeen, Marion’s father helped her find a job and a rooming house in Toronto. Another great story is told of Marion, upon being asked how much she made in Hanover, honestly answered twelve cents. She meant twelve cents a day and the company thought she meant twelve cents an hour. Marion could not believe her great fortune upon receiving her paycheques!

It was in Toronto that May Marion Myers met and married James Richard Darling, son of Richard and Jane (nee Teather) Darling. Although they worked together at Canadian General Electric, albeit in different departments, it was not until a dance at the Palais Royal that they began to see each other seriously.

Eight years his junior, Marion and Jim courted on and off for about five years. They were wed in Toronto, July 28, 1951 at Redeemer Lutheran Church. The service was presided over by The Rev. Opperman. Kay McVicor (soon to be Kay Harknett) and Bill Baggott acted as their witnesses. Following their wedding, Marion and Jim lived with Jim’s mother and step-father, Jane and Walter Priestly.

Two years into their marriage, Marion and Jim made their big move southwest to Burbank, California. Marion and Jim bought a 1953 Nash Rambler in Detroit and off they went. All together the two love birds had lived in Toronto for ten years.

Once in California, Marion and Jim quickly settled in their new life and jobs. Marion worked for AT&T as a telephone operator for thirty-some years. In fact, Marion drew a company pension longer than she had worked for the group. In fact, unbeknownst to Marion, just a few weeks before her death she was cut off from her company pension because she had lived too long! Imagine. Jim and Marion moved around a fair bit, living in Costa Mesa and San Diego, to name a few. In some places, they lived in a trailer and even moved the trailer to their next destination.

In 1956, Jim and Marion took yet another chance, travelling abroad throughout Europe for five months. It was a trip of a lifetime. Comically, Jim’s suitcase was filled with cigarettes and Marion’s suitcase was filled with their clothing! Their embarkment took place at Montréal, Québec, April 17, 1956 to arrive April 24, 1956 in Liverpool, England. The ship’s name was S.S. Empress of France owned by the Canadian Pacific Steamship Line. They were listed as going for a month on vacation but enjoyed their vacation so much it lasted five months. On the manifest, Jim was listed as a machinist and Marion as a housewife.

A treasure Marion brought back from her trip was a crystal jam container that was still in her possession when she died. It was a good thing that it was a jam container and nothing else as Marion was not a cook or a baker by any stretch of the imagination. However, she did love her berries and was excellent at making preserves. Marion could make a great shredded potatoe casserole and in turn, loved to eat potatoe pancakes. Marion also had a sweet tooth and one the many things that she missed about Canada were buttertarts, Nanaimo bars and Big Turk Chocolate bars. In fact, Joanne would bring these treats with her when she came to visit. Ed would mail another of her favourite treats every year, Sugar-Free Millcreek Chocolates, and she would allow herself one a week after church! The truth is, she and Jim ate out a lot! They even bought a share in IHop! This enabled Jim and Marion to eat for free once a month. She loved baseball, especially the Toronto Blue Jays and Arizona Diamondbacks (D-backs). Always one to love a good deal, Marion and her friends would go out for free tacos at Taco Bell or free burgers at Jack in the Box (her favourite) depending on how well the Diamondbacks played the previous day.

Another semi-precious treasure Marion had in her possession was an elephant piggy bank. I kid you not! Apparently, Jim bought it for her, from children along a roadside and through an open bus window, while they were in Mexico. The elephant moved with them many times throughout California and Arizona, but sadly it was broken while in transit to Chesley after her death.

While Marion may not have liked to cook or bake, she was an incredible sewer. Having such beautifully long legs Marion had to learn how to sew at a young age as clothing items were hard to find that fit properly. Marion sewed most of her clothes well into retirement and living at Good Shepherd Retirement Village in Peoria, Arizona.

Living in California, Marion and Jim travelled extensively throughout the U.S. Together they tented for a number of years until a bear in Yosemite National Park convinced Marion otherwise. They also made numerous trips north to British Columbia and for eleven years they came home to Chesley for the summer, to the house that she and Don lived in as children. These summers created some of the best memories for both of them, as she always maintained a proud connection to her Canadian roots and her family. She loved to golf in Hanover, visit relatives and friends and watch her nephews play baseball.

One year, Marion’s job offered free golfing lessons and she fell in love with the sport. Jim was already an avid golfer and the club they belonged to had many celebrity members. Golf was her reason for living. Well not exactly, yet she did aspire to go professional. In 1977 Marion actually won the President’s Cup for being the best golfer in her district. Every year they participated in a week-long tournament situated throughout North America.

After living and working in California for twenty-two years, Marion and Jim retired and moved to Cheryl Drive, Sun City, Arizona in 1982. They did this to better have access to golf! In the winter of 2005, Marion and Jim moved into Good Shepherd Retirement Village in Peoria where Jim passed away on Wednesday, September 21, 2005 in his 87th year. Luckily, they had celebrated their anniversary just previously. They would have been married fifty-four years that previous July.

While in California, both Marion and Jim also bowled. Lucky Marion, she managed to win a reward for being on the very losing team! Marion loved to play cards which Jim did not like to do so much. He would play the occasional game of euchre whereas Marion was an avid bridge player. She even organized weekly bridge parties at Good Shepherd where residents would go house to house to play. Marion managed to outplay, and even outlive, all her competitors. One competitor always said he wanted to live to 100 years of age, and he did! He was the last survivor to play bridge with Marion. It is quite evident that Marion was very bright and thus she loved watching Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! As well, she was well capable of looking after her own finances right up until the very end!

Marion also loved to check out any, and all, thrift stores. Even though Marion was thrifty, not cheap, she loved buying things for people as she had a heart of gold. And even though she was independent she was definitely not stubborn. (According to Marion, that is!) At the age of eighty-five, Marion took her final driver’s test. She knew she would never drive again but she wanted to prove that she could still pass the test. Imagine!

The truth of it is, Marion was tough and a survivor. She had to grow up fast, especially living and working in Toronto at such a young age. Despite many health issues over the last 15 years, in particular a stroke, Marion remained optimistic and her goal was to celebrate her 90th birthday. And she did with the help of her close friends Val, Kathy and Denise. Through it all, it was her faith that pulled her through. Marion was one of those few people who actually lived out her faith!

Marion was an elegant, refined woman who held her head up high and had a positive attitude, no matter what! She was always impeccably dressed and her shoes, purse and beads always matched each outfit. One certainly did not drink from a can but rather always from a glass. (Yet, in her more mature years Marion was seen to drink from the occasional pop can!) And guests were often vocally discouraged from having another beer just before dinner! However, Halloween was her time to relax and dress up! Marion truly loved any of the holidays!

Of course, Marion loved to dance and Jim was also not so fond of it, even though he loved Big Band music and began seriously dating Marion after a dance. Jim often stated that having already met his mate, he no longer needed to dance. Poor Marion! However, the joke was on Jim because every New Year’s Eve called for a dance around the living room at midnight! Marion too loved the Big Band era music. She had a lovely singing voice and loved live theatre. Even in her younger years, she attended performances in Toronto and when in Arizona Marion also attended performances at the Arizona Opera House. Marion loved the social life at Good Shepherd and participated in many activities, such as lunch at the Club House, church services, exercise classes, bingo and outings to museums, movies, theatre and restaurants. Marion cherished the many visits that Joanne and Dave made and loved sharing her favourite activities with them. Her favourite visit was in 2017 when Joanne and Dave surprised her by bringing Ed along! She loved reading her spiritual books, especially those by Mitch Albom and Jeannette Oke!

Marion passed away on Saturday, December 28, 2019 in her 93rd year. Marion will be greatly missed by all who knew her in Canada and Arizona. She was predeceased in 2005 by her beloved husband, James Darling, of 54 years. Loving Aunt of Joanne (David) Boyes, Edward (Victoria) Myers, Donna (Brian) Gobert, all of Chesley and James (Christine) Myers of Paisley. Lovingly remembered by her great-nieces and nephews Shannon (Tom), Amanda, Nickolas, Paige (Ben), Jessica (George), Palmer (Jordan), Sydney, Megan, Emmett, and six great-great-nieces and nephews. She will be fondly remembered by Rose Witteveen of Paisley. Marion was predeceased by her brother Donald (Dorothy) Myers, her parents and nieces Jane Myers and Sadie Myers.

Friends and family are invited to a graveside service celebrating Marion's life at the Chesley Cemetery on her 93rd birthday, Saturday, May 23, 2020 at 11 a.m.

Memorial donations to St. Mark's Lutheran Church would be appreciated as expressions of sympathy.

Send to friend
Nancy & Bev Nickel
January 5, 2020
Heartfelt sympathies to the entire family on the loss of very dear aunt. She was always happy go lucky and always smiling. Bless her
Pam & Robert Bell
January 5, 2020
So sorry to hear about Aunt Marion,
Please accept our deepest heartfelt sympathies,
may your memories bring you peace at this time
Theressa Stade
January 4, 2020
Sympathy to the entire family so sorry for your loss.

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Our Testimonials

Well Nathan…due to COVID and everything going on, you did an excellent job and you went above and beyond our expectation. COVID changed a lot of things, but in the end we were very satisfied. Thank you! 

Mary Kaufman

I can think of nothing you could have done to better improve our experience. My grandchildren & I all felt relaxed and so appreciated your quiet, excellent care of our family. You provided dignity & caring – so much appreciated. I somehow knew we were in good hands.

Joan Saunders

We were very pleased with everything. So much positive feedback was received! We felt so very supported and cared for throughout!! We would recommend your funeral home in a heartbeat. We were so happy to travel from Barrie to Chesley to have you take care of our John. Thank you all so much!

Margaret Ellis & Family

Because of COVID-19 we had to do the complete service from home via D.V.D. GREAT!

William Hall

I was amazed that I could smell KFC fries when I first walked in at the visitation. That was so lovely. My husband would have loved it. Thank you again for that! 

Sheila Jacobs

[I] have already told many people what an amazing job you did. My entire family and friends couldn’t agree more! Everything was totally looked after. Things I never would have thought of were either done or brought to my attention. Thank you so much for everything you did. It made a really rough time a little easier to handle. Thank you!

Dianne Veen

“One of a kind” service as well as ongoing support! Beyond [our expectations] and Thank You.

Carol Vallie

I received comments on how informative and interesting the life story was. I know how amazing you are!!! I never stop bragging about you !!!

Lynn Jackson & Family

Nathan and his staff are kind, compassionate and gentle as they guide you through the process of celebrating the life of your loved one. My family has worked with Rhody Funeral Home five times now and each time they have went above and beyond to support us and to honour our loved ones. We will be forever grateful for the professional yet personal way they approach funeral planning. Their sincere empathy and passion for helping families during this difficult time of life is a gift.

Sarah Rogers

It was 100%. I got many comments on how things were handled.

Eugene Perkins

Nothing could have been done to better improve my experience. Nathan, I was more than pleased with everything. Thank you.

Morris Galbraith

I found yourselves very helpful and can’t think of anything negative in our experience with yourselves. We were satisfied [nothing could have been done to better serve us, including] also the travel to Tapleytown (Hamilton) at a low cost where the burial took place.

David Kuiper

Everything was perfect. We had many comments on the service and the little personal touches – that makes it special. Keep up the personal touches!!!

Janice Rapp

Nothing comes to my mind as to what you could have done to improve our experience. My whole family was so pleased, as was I, with every detail. All of the details were so well presented and the full staff were so helpful. In terms of pricing, we received what we asked for ten-fold. Every aspect of Jim’s funeral was so well presented and we would certainly pass this on to others. 

Karen Siegrist

There was nothing that could have been improved. (Except the weather!) The prices were reasonable, especially with the services provided. Thank you so very much. With such a large family, everyone was very pleased on professionalism and presentation.

Terrilea Fidler

I don’t think there is anything more you could have done. Everything was so professionally done, in our experience. I don’t know any place that goes the extra mile to help families accommodate their needs. Nothing could have been improved. We could not have been more satisfied.

Reta Steward

It felt as if you had met and knew John! All of us agreed that John would have approved. Many friends commented on how lovely the service was and how it suited John.

Cathie Stauffer

I really can’t think of anything you could have done to better improve our experience. The only other funeral that I helped arrange was for my father, and at that time I didn’t get the same sense of professionalism or sympathy. Nathan was willing to accept our suggestions, and also to “take the lead” in showing us the next step and what was expected, even to putting details of the funeral into my computer!

Martie Dorland

You did a wonderful job from start to finish. I can’t think of anything you need to improve on. Great job! Helping us to wade through the government forms was great! Saved us a lot of anxiety. We will definitely recommend your funeral home. Wonderful service with kind and caring staff. 

Carol Ryan

I don’t see how you can improve exceptional services. Whatever was necessary on your part to provide was done without question. You eliminated much paperwork and guided us through a painful process with empathy and professionalism. 

Donna Jones-Baldwin

I feel the professional quality of services my family received was second to none.

Kim Moylan

Nathan, I can’t tell you how much your care and support has meant to my whole family. You obviously take great pride in the service you provide. I can’t think of anything you could have done to help us more. You, your mom and Terri-Ann make an excellent team. I had so many compliments on the set up and the service. I sing your praises to everyone who asks. Keep up the fantastic work.

Ruth Stephen and family

It was exceptional how Nathan opened our hearts and minds to give info; then transferred into so many ‘on target’ ways. Also very comforting and understanding to us all. Many comments, impressed, liked all that was done, respectful family-like atmosphere at all times. Especially kind to young members of family as well. Above and totally beyond expectation – Thanks.

Mary Harrison

What one thing could we have done better to improve your experience?
Nothing, we were very happy with services and support provided to our family. Well done. We really appreciated everything that was done for us and how well it was done.

Don MacDermid

Overall I am extremely pleased. Your kind, caring and professional services went above what I expected. All our needs were met satisfactorily and more.

Barbara Aikens

Everything was done so professionally that I don’t think anything else could have been done.

Joy Pitman

You go above and beyond with your services and expertise and compassion.

Judy Charlton

You have succeeded in taking the sadness out of a funeral and made it into a celebration of life and remembrance, which we truly appreciated... Continue doing what you did for us. It was exceptional in every regard.

Marlowe Emke

Our law office often has had many estates involving families who have obtained funeral services from Nathan. He is regarded by my staff and myself as outstanding for his professional, pleasant, and efficient manner. We would highly recommend Rhody Family Funeral Home to anyone.

Ross McLean, McLean Lawyers

Dear Nathan, I cannot say thank you enough for everything you and the rest of the Rhody Family Funeral Home team done for our family with Mom's passing. From the moment you got to Mom's house your professionalism was second to none. You listened and read between the lines yet missed nothing, every little touch was simply perfect, you left nothing undone, your care and compassion to ensure our family made Mom proud one more time, and for that I am forever grateful. You took a very difficult time for us and made it as simple and stress free for us as humanly possible. Nathan you should be very proud of yourself and the rest of your team. You have definitely set the bar very high for any other funeral home in the province to follow. Again thank you

Sincerely, Deb and Doug

Nathan: Thank you so very much for all that you have done for my Mom and my family. Your friendship during this difficult time was truly heartfelt. You made us feel welcome and like a part of your family. The whole time we spoke both at the nursing home and then at your place was a very peaceful experience. Not once were we made to feel like we did not belong there. Your attention to detail in everything that all of us said shows in the story of my Dad’s life and the video. Where there were concerns, you set them all at ease. I so appreciate all that you did for my Mom in helping her take care of cancellations and notifications for my Dad. It set her mind at ease knowing that you were taking care of all of this for her. It set me at ease knowing that she would not have to deal with the frustrations that sometimes come in taking care of these things. You and your family have gone above and beyond in all that you have done for us and I am truly thankful. The warmth and caring went home with us that day. We knew that the right choice had been made in allowing you to take care of my Dad. Again, thank you.


Your services are respectful, accomodating and very professional. An excellent job done. Thank you.

Darren Goodayle

Our aunt & uncle were buried from a different funeral home and we noticed a huge difference in the funeral home services provided. Our mom and dad looked so natural (thank you!) while our aunt and uncle did not. Thank you Nathan, we can't begin to tell you how much we appreciate you and your staff this year!

Ann Legge, Patricia Tibbo & Jane Lembke

All the worlds a stage and all the men and women merely players." Rhody Family Funeral Home takes this and runs with it in an intricate and tasteful manner. The beautiful funeral home sets the stage to reflect the deceased's individual personality. Nathan's artistic ability is only surpassed by his compassion, sincerity and understanding. He goes above and beyond the required duties. His staff is second to none. Darlene Rhody soft spoken and sympathetic and Morris Emke gentlemanly and obliging. Pastor Terri-Ann is like no other with her comforting words of wisdom and encouragement and so compassionate. Her service was nothing short of beautiful. A very heartfelt thank you to Nathan and his staff for making an unpleasant experience bearable. And hats off to Rhody Family funeral home for sending dad -Ross Hammond off in the fashion he deserved. From my mom and my siblings our sincerest gratitude.

Nancy Nickel

Personnel, facilities, advise & support all exceeded our expectations - it helped to communicate details by email. In particular, both Nathan and Terri-Ann did an excellent job! I was surpised at the after service documentation - all details well organized.

Larry Bell

Nathan and staff were kind and helpful throughout the process. They really went above and beyond to make the experience as positive as possible.

Amy Stephen

Everything was great - many great comments made about the story alone on Pearl's life and we sent copies to people who could not attend - a very nice addition.

Family of Pearl Stephen

Our experience was amazing under the circumstances. Your services were perfect. You went above and beyond our expectations. You are very caring, compassionate and professional in your approach. You create a very therapeutic environment.

Elmer Ward

"Dear Nathan, your many caring and creative touches from the notice to the burial in the days following Catharine's (McKeeman) passing meant so much to all of us. You honoured her life in so many meaningful ways. Your compassion and celebration of her life will always be remembered by all those Catharine held dear."

Ian Campbell, Catharine's Brother

“Nathan, you did an absolutely amazing job. People give us compliments about everything from the life story to the beautiful, elaborate displays at the visitation. I tell everyone it was you. All the surprises - the cookies, the recipe cards, the signing picture - all amazing!”

Kim and Alan Grant

“Staff were professional and friendly.”

“Exceptional service.”

Lawrence and Heather Lamarche

“Nathan, you present yourself very well. Facilities were all that could be expected.”

“I would recommend your funeral home to everyone. Nathan’s ability to put you at ease, with a caring attitude is super and very respectful!”

Carol Golem

“We were all very impressed.”

Roberta Godwin

“Dear Nathan - You did a good job. Thank-you for all your help and all the information you obtained for me."

Gloria Albright

“Your sense of humour was a plus! You and your staff clearly have a calling for the work that you do. We all felt that we were in good hands throughout the entire process…. Nathan, thank you for everything. You made things easy for us, as we felt like we were working on Dad’s arrangements with family. We gave Dad a great send off and thank you and your staff for being a part of it.”

Deborah Hart

“Letters cancelling Gov’t services was a great help and was very much appreciated.”

William & Loraine Patterson

“You did everything really well. All needs were met and then some.… We received positive comments on the stationary. Great keep sakes. The book and slideshow were beautiful.”

Elaine King

“We had no concerns- worries, nothing, but confidence in the staff – we knew exactly how everything would happen and when - it was so nice not to have to concern ourselves with anything.”

Rebecca Becker

"I don't think there is anything more you or your staff could do."

Bernice Frook

"No improvement needed. We were pleased with everything."

Susan Taylor

“I would not have changed anything. Thanks very much – Nathan and staff.”

“New renovations are very inviting and warm. All your new cards and books are very heart warming and keepsakes.”

Valerie Long

"Staff were outstanding. Overall, it was great. Everything was perfect."

Susan Laver

“Staff is exceptional!... All needs were met.”

“Service was beyond expectations… Already recommended to various people.”

Steve Thomson

“Could not have been more useful – very satisfied! I would highly recommend Rhody Family. Thank you ever so much for your professionalism and expertise.”

Dave Hillier

“Honestly, you and your staff made this time in my life the best it could be and were extremely helpful, respectful, professional and accommodating to my needs and my family’s needs, especially providing me with a space to feed [my child] if needed. Thank you for everything”

Olivia Strucke

“Everything was perfect; it’s always nice to have lots of options.”

Kevin Dailey

“Thank you for all your empathy, compassion and professionalism. Our family… is very grateful that we chose Rhody Family Funeral Home to look after our loved one.”

Siobhan Bell

“Your services were excellent. Thank you again.”

Debbie Eidt

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