Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Marvin Skadberg on Marvel

My father shared this at my mother´s memorial.

This short biography is dedicated to my memory of Marvel

I want to write a few words about Marvel as she was the most important person in my life and my life would not been the same without her and her influence. I would not be Emeritus Professor of Iowa State University if it had not been for Marvel.

She taught me how to be social, and to love music, especially the classics.

Many of you didn’t know Marvel when she was younger and before her medical problems began to hinder her activities and reduce her confidence.

Marvel brought the joy of living into my life as I was a rather stogie, shy person when I first met Marvel.

Marvel was the most enthusiastic, engaging, full of life person I had ever met. There was nothing she wouldn’t be willing to do which might be interesting.

When we went to the various State Fairs around North Dakota, she would insist on taking all of the rides in the fair, many times with my initial, sometimes reluctant vocal objection. She wanted me to try all of the booths that required some skill. I failed to achieve one of her greatest desire was for me to win her a fluffy stuffed animal. I could have bought ten all of them with the money I lost trying the games skill, throwing darts, tossing hoops, throwing baseballs at bowling balls or shooting an air rifle.

Marvel did two major things for my career that I will never forget. When we were in Langdon and she was going through a severe personnel crisis of an emotional breakdown. I suggested that I was not happy with my County Agents work and would like after things improved, to go back to college and get my Masters degree. One must remember that in doing so we would give up a good salary and live on my GI bill and a small assistantship, raising two children. Marvels answer was” Marvin I am not very happy now, I want you to go to school, then maybe at least one of us would be happy”. Four months later we were back at college.

The second time occurred when I had been at Iowa State University, for four years, going to school for my Ph.D. and working as a research assistant. I was tired of working and going to school and scraping by financially. I received an offer to be an extension area specialist in Maine. The salary was twice what I was receiving at Iowa State. Marvel’s suggestion was that we were able to live on my salary at Iowa State University and we should not give up our dream for me to get my Ph.D.
Marvel always waited up for me till midnight when I had extension meetings around the state. After midnight, she would go to bed and visit with me when I came home, no matter how late it was.

Marvel always fought back from any illness, depression, severe sunstroke, arthritis attack, intrusive thoughts and two strokes. She was always determined to get her life back to normal. She would use any help she could get to speed the recovery or understand it. She had the greatest will to live and live a normal life that I have ever seen.

Marvel tackled with vigor every project she got involved in, be it copper tooling, candle making, learning about the great composers and listening to them, signing, and her latest passion painting

Marvel was the least person to judge other people and she never gossiped about any friends or neighbors. I know she heard many things about friends and neighbors, but I never learned anything about them from her. I would hear some tales about people and tell her about them and she would say,” I know I have heard that before”.

Marvel loved her children, even though she was strict, there was very little that she wouldn’t have done for them.

I loved Marvel’s hugs and kisses, even when she was dying, when I gave her a kiss and she said, “ Do it again!”

If there is reincarnation, as Marvel believed, she will come back as the most loving being on this planet.

Goodbye my LOVE.

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