Marjorie Jean Gang passed away on Nov. 26, 2018, at Wesley Willows in Rockford, Ill. Born Oct. 22, 1934, on the family farm near Toulon, Ill., she was the daughter of David Dunn and Opal Tracy Dunn, and was also raised for a time by her beloved aunt, Jennie Dunn Ladd, in Kewanee, Ill. Marjorie showed an early talent in music, especially singing. As a young woman, she won numerous vocal awards and had her first solo performance in church singing “His Eye is on the Sparrow” while still in elementary school. She graduated from Toulon Township High School and briefly studied music at Illinois State University in Bloomington, Ill. She married James E. Gang in 1956, moving to Belvidere, Ill., where she focused her boundless energy on raising their four daughters, working part-time as a library and lunchroom aide at Washington Elementary School, and volunteering in the Belvidere community.
Marjorie devoted 40-plus years to working with scouts and leaders through the Rock River Valley Council of Girl Scouts. She was a troop leader, neighborhood chairwoman, camp aficionado, and instructor—teaching songs and games to hundreds of girls and giving American Red Cross first aid training to scout leaders. She served on the boards of Boone County CASA, Boone County United Way, Boone County Housing Authority, and supported many causes that invigorated the Belvidere and Boone County communities. She received the Doctor of Civic Betterment award from the Boone County Chamber of Commerce in 1987. She was a wonderful mother who inspired her daughters to love music and the outdoors, to be self-reliant and community-minded, and to make the best baked goods and apple pies. She served as a deacon for First Presbyterian Church in Belvidere, where she made lifelong friends, especially in Faith Circle, choir, and bell choir.
She moved to Wesley Willows in 2014, and the family is grateful for the community of friends and compassionate staff who cared for her there. She was predeceased by her husband of 40 years, James E. Gang, sister, Shirley Dunn Rieker, and brother, Jim Dunn, and her mother and father. She is survived by four daughters: Nancy Hatten, Susan (Daniel) Kasten, Jeanne Gang (Mark Schendel), and Dr. Kathleen Gang (Scott Armstrong), one grandson, Christian Hatten, five step-grandchildren, Tristan Schendel, and Mijen, Grace, Elsa, and Sawyer Armstrong, nephew, John Rieker, niece, Dorothy Rieker, and dearest friends, Denise Fish and Nancy Houk.
Services are planned for Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018, at Anderson Funeral and Cremation Services, 218 W. Hurlbut Ave., in Belvidere, Ill. Visitation from 1 p.m. to 2:45 p.m., celebration of life at 3 p.m. Gifts in Marge’s memory should be directed to the Girls Scouts of Northern Illinois at www.girlscoutsni.org or 2820 McFarland Rd., Rockford, IL, 61107.