Marilyn June (Abel) Conklin, a beloved mother, spouse, educator, coach and music lover, passed away peacefully surrounded by her five children at her home in Wooster, Ohio, on May 5, 2022. She was 86.
Marilyn possessed an inimitable personality and an irrepressible spirit that continued until her final days. She leaves us all with countless fond memories. We were all fortunate to have been part of Marilyn s life story. Over her 40 years as an educator and coach, Marilyn changed the lives of literally thousands of children in Ohio.
Marilyn was born in Toledo, Ohio, on June 5, 1935, to Velma E. (Bohland) and Marion T. Abel. She attended St. Teresa School and St. Ursula Academy, where she excelled in class and on the basketball court. Marilyn starred on her Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) basketball teams from fifth grade through her senior year in high school.
She also played leading roles on her St. Ursula intramural basketball teams. During her junior year, she helped lead her team to the championship — averaging 23 points per game. The school newspaper lauded Marilyn s almost professional ability. Asked about it later, she said That s because I was a ball hog.
In 1955, Marilyn married Duane W. Conklin and they started a family in their first home in Point Place, Ohio. They were regular members of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. In 1970, they moved to the Old Orchard neighborhood on Toledo s west side and became members of St. Pius X Church.
Marilyn loved playing pinochle with her friends from Point Place, keeping up with these and other lifelong friends from the Point even after moving to West Toledo. She spoke of her friends fondly even in her final days.
Marilyn returned to college at the University of Toledo while continuing to do a superb job raising her five children. She earned a bachelor s degree in education, graduating Magna Cum Laude in 1972 and immediately began teaching in elementary school.
Marilyn taught third grade at Blessed Sacrament Elementary School from 1972-1980. She moved to St. Pius in 1981 where she taught seventh grade. She also sang in the church choir at St. Pius for many years. When Marilyn retired from the Catholic diocese, she continued teaching as a substitute at Ottawa Hills and Springfield schools near Toledo.
Even after moving in 2000 to Wooster, Ohio, Marilyn continued teaching. She taught at several schools but had a special place in her heart for the students of Lincoln Way Elementary School. Marilyn retired at the age of 75.
Throughout her life, Marilyn remained committed to the CYO. For decades she volunteered as a coach, referee, and trainer. She also coached her three daughters many basketball teams over the years. In 1981, Marilyn received the CYO Contributor Award and later the CYO Continuous Service Award for her years of dedicated service to the organization.
Possessing an unfailing passion for music, Marilyn in 1982 joined the Toledo Seaway chapter of the Sweet Adelines, an international barbershop chorus organization. She served as president of the chapter along with several other leadership roles on the board of directors. Marilyn also sung with the River Raisin and City of Flags chapters of Sweet Adelines.
In her own family, Marilyn will be fondly remembered by each of her children, fourteen grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren children. Over the years she and Duane attended countless athletic events, plays, recitals, science fairs and graduations.
Marilyn was preceded in death by Duane, her husband of 60 years. Also preceding her in death were her mother and father, Marion and Velma Abel, as well as her sisters, Phyllis (Abel) Krieger and Louann (Abel) Vinson, several beloved uncles, brother-in-law Bernard ( Corky ) Mackey, and son-in-law, Chris Katsiagianis.
She is survived by her brother Myron Abel and his wife Lorene along with her sisters Sharon (Abel) Mackey and Darlene (Abel) Slandzicki and her husband Jim. Also surviving Marilyn are her children Nadine (Conklin) Seemann and her husband Jeff; Wendy (Conklin) Katsiagianis; Michelle (Conklin) Schenian and her husband Dale; Jeffrey Conklin; and William Conklin; grandchildren Kelly, Mike, Erin (Andy) Dewitt, Dan, John Seemann, Ntinos (Savannah) Katsiagianis, Sarah (Kyle) Sawyer, Jake Corrigan, Aja (Aaron) Carter, Tori (John) McLaughlin, Mariah (Matt) Kopina, Sydney, Macy and Drew Conklin
Marilyn s family wishes to express our most heartfelt gratitude to Connie Mast her wonderful caregiver of the last two years. We d also like to thank Ohio s Hospice for their kind and dedicated care.
Marilyn will be remembered in ceremony at McIntire, Bradham & Sleek, 216 E. Larwill St., Wooster, Ohio, 44691, on Friday, May 13, 2022. Receiving of friends is from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. with funeral services immediately thereafter. The funeral will also be live streamed on the McIntire, Bradham & Sleek Funeral Home Facebook page.
The family also will host a celebration of Marilyn s life in Toledo on Saturday, May 14, 2022 at The Blarney Irish Pub, 601 Monroe St., Toledo, OH 43604 from 2:00-6:00 PM. A block of rooms is reserved at the Renaissance Hotel 444 N. Summit St. Toledo. To reserve please contact the family.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the Alzheimer s Association https://act.alz.org/site/Donation2/ or Ohio s Hospice www.ohioshospice.org.
Online condolences may be left for the family at www.mcintirebradhamsleek.com
n lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the Alzheimer s Association https://act.alz.org/site/Donation2/ or Ohio s Hospice www.ohioshospice.org.
Friday, May 13, 2022 at 6:00 PM at the funeral home. The service will also be livestreamed on the McIntire, Bradham & Sleek Funeral Home Facebook page.The family also will host a celebration of Marilyn s life in Toledo on Saturday, May 14, 2022 at The Blarney Irish Pub, 601 Monroe St., Toledo, OH 43604 from 2:00-6:00 PM. A block of rooms is reserved at the Renaissance Hotel 444 N. Summit St. Toledo. To reserve please contact the family.
Friday, May 13, 2022 from 4:00-6:00 PM at the funeral home