Marjorie Rees Andersen was born in Coalville, Utah to Ralph and Melva Rees on January 21, 1929, the fifth of eight children.
She graduated from North Summit High School, (Class of ‘47) and married Arthur James Andersen on May 24, 1947. They have five children: Jim, Steve, Pat, Debbie and Mike, but there are others who also refer to her as “Mom” as well, including Gina Cuprak, who lived with the family for many years while she was growing up. Some are friends of her children; others were members of her 4-H club, The Jerstein Dairy 4-H Club.
Marjorie grew up on a dairy farm and had a knack for working with animals. But it was soon discovered she had a talent for music as well, with a vocal range of a lyric soprano. Mr. Rosengreen at North Summit High School mentored her and had the greatest influence on the development of her talent. She studied music for a time at Utah State University after she married and moved to Cache Valley. Marjorie’s voice carried her into the Bel Canto Chorus, where she spent every Tuesday night for almost fifty years rehearsing for different concerts, and spent many Sundays performing in churches throughout Cache Valley and sometimes a performance or two outside the immediate area. She has also participated in area and church choirs and the choir for the Annual Wellsville Founders Day Celebration. Her children also received her gift of music with all of them either singing, playing a musical instrument, or dancing. This has been passed down to many of the grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Marjorie has been involved in 4-H since she was a child, working with purebred Jersey calves and cows to get them ready for the county and state fairs. When she had children of her own, she opened her home and her farm to any 4-H-aged youth who wanted the experience of working with their cows in 4-H. After 35 years of leading while her own children were growing up, along came her grandchildren joined the club. Eventually, her daughter-in-law, Jaylene, took over the leadership of the club, but she still raised funds with local businesses for the dairy 4-H program and has attended every county and state fair’s 4-H show day. Marjorie is well known throughout the county and the state for her contributions to the program in time, energy and enthusiasm. She was recognized by the State Farm Bureau for her outstanding leadership in 4-H. She also served the Farm Bureau Ladies on a county level. She served as president of the Cache County Dairy Wives for two years.
Marjorie and her husband Arthur Andersen were married for almost 65 years at the time of his passing in April of 2012. Together they served two missions: one in St. Louis, Missouri, and the other in the Portland Oregon Mission.
Twenty people call Marjorie “Grandma” and 38 call her “Great-Grandma.” One grandson is serving full time in the military and a granddaughter is serving a mission in Salem, Oregon.
We are having an open house surprise party for her at the Wellsville Stake Center on Jan. 19, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. We would love to see you there. No gifts, please.