We were saddened to receive the news that one of WPPI’s legacies, Marlene Gourlay, passed away on Christmas day. While I have many years of WPPI’s under my belt, I unfortunately never had the pleasure of meeting her.
Steve Sheanin posted this on his Facebook page this morning:
OCTOBER 10, 1941 – DECEMBER 25, 2012
“It is with much angst and a heavy heart, that I inform you of the passing of our wonderful Marlene. She has been in my life and that of Rangefinder/WPPI for close to 40 years and in the lives of many of you for a similar amount of time. She had been our friend, confident, mother and above all, our all around go to person whenever we needed her. She gave so much of herself to us in the most unselfish of ways that she will always be in out thoughts as we go on with our daily lives. We will always remember her qualities, idiosyncrasies, the things that she did that made us laugh and cry as she plied us with junk food, shared our joys, sorrows, pleasures, pains, families and friendship.
Marlene never asked for anything in return other than our friendship, loyalty and support. She had a great family that she was always there for, whenever they needed her asking nothing in return.
Marlene will be sorely missed by all.
Sleep well Sweet Princess and thanks for all you have given to so many. We will treasure our fond memories of you for all the days of our lives.”
Skip Cohen also shared the news with us, and wrote a nice article about her here:
Quoting Skip’s article:
“Marlene was the one at Rangefinder Publishing and WPPI who was always behind the scenes. To exhibitors, advertisers and speakers she was always there as the link to chasing down just about anything they needed. I know she was a key in my life during the seven years I was there, but she was with the company for over forty years. She helped Steve Sheanin’s father build the magazine and then was Steve’s right hand on the show and magazine right up until the company was sold a couple of years ago.”
Susan, Rigo, and Gennie who worked with her for many years at WPPI had some nice words I’d like to share:
Susan Cegarra wrote:
“She liked do birthday cake at 8 am in the morning and organized all the company’s holiday parties. She was very generous. She would buy us pizza when it was raining and we always had the kitchen stocked up with donuts, pie, and fruit.”
Rigo Luis wrote:
“Marlene was a very nice person, she really loved all of us. She was always a listening ear when any of us needed someone to talk to, and always offered her advice even if it was not what we wanted to hear. She was a straight shooter. She was honest and gave so much of herself. It is very sad to think of her as gone. However we cherish the fond memories of her beautiful smile in our hearts. Marlene will be missed by all of us.”
Gennie Kiuchi wrote:
“She wasn’t just our office manager, she was “Mom” and we were her family. She cared for each one of us so very personally. “
You will always be remembered, and will always be part of the WPPI family in our hearts. I will personally try to continue the tradition of 8AM birthday cake! Thank you for everything you’ve done over the years, and for making our industry what it is today.