Margery Belden Alexander died at her younger daughter's home in Portland, Maine on Nov. 29, 2012 at age 97. She had been in failing health and for several years and had divided her time between the homes of her two daughters, Joan and Janet.
The younger of two children of Wayne and Hilda Whetham Belden, Margery was born July 17, 1915, in Westfield, N.Y. She and John Edward Alexander married Sept. 19, 1931, and raised three children. In addition to hand coloring photographs in her husband's studio in Westfield, Marge worked for the Westfield Academy and Central School, the Lakeview Restaurant, the Loyal Order of Moose, Hyde's Plumbing and Heating and Welch's. For many years she was a member of the Westfield Chapter of the Order of Eastern Star where she ascended the chairs to become Worthy Matron in 1956. Marge was a voracious reader and lover of language who enjoyed crosswords and Scrabble. She bowled on the Kingan's Drug Store team at Barcelona Lanes for more than a decade and also the Southside Builders and Pinters Restaurant teams and had taken up golfing before leaving Westfield.
She was a knowledgeable and interested cook, subscribing to Gourmet beginning with its second issue in 1941. Her husband especially enjoyed her expertise saying, "Gourmet arrived. On the first day, she read. On the second day, she shopped. On the third day, we ate." She also played Match Bridge partnering with her husband or her father while earning many masters points. Marge was able to indulge her interest in thoroughbred racing by attending the Preakness Stakes on several occasions and enjoyed trips with friends to Buffalo and Erie area harness tracks. She traveled with family to Ireland, England, France and Candada and following retirement from Welch's, she worked a summer baking for The Gingerbread House, a tearoom in St. Michael's, Md., while visiting her daughter. After moving to Portland, Maine in 1987, she volunteered at Maine Medical Center's admitting department and spent several summers working at the front desk of the Athenaeum Hotel at the Chautauqua Institution, Chautauqua, N.Y.
Margery Belden Alexander
She is survived by her daughters and sons-in law, Joan and Harold Mannion of Greenhurst, N.Y., and Janet Alexander and William Dalbec of Portland, Maine; grandchildren, John Mannion and Dr. Janice Weisman of Marlborough, Mass., and Eastchester, N.Y., Thomas and Veronique Mannion of Miami, Fla., and Elizabeth Mannion, Esq. of Elmira, N.Y.; and great-grandchildren Aric and wife Laisay Mannion of Los Angeles, Calif., Alexandrea Montilla of Elmira, N.Y., and Pauline and Adele Mannion of Miami, Fla.
Margery was predeceased by her son, John Alexander, Jr., in 1960; her husband, John, Sr., in 1973; and brother, Charles Belden in 1996.
The family wishes to thank her doctors James Harper, MD of Portland and Donald Brautigam, MD of Westfield, N.Y., and staff members of VNA of Western NY, Aging Excellence of Portland, Maine and Hospice of Southern Maine for their care and support over many years.
At Margery's request, no memorial service is planned. Friends who wish may donate in her memory to the Patterson Library, Westfield, N.Y. or Hospice of Southern Maine, Scarborough, Maine.