Marge Harger is a bit of a jokester. When I visited her to conduct this interview, I arrived at her front door and gave a knock.
“I’m coming!” I hear from within the apartment.
I wait a moment.
“Still coming!” she shouts, closer this time.
I smile, and wait another minute.
“I’m really on my way!” she says, opening the door with a broad grin.
After politely inviting me in, we get started. Marge was born in Chicago, Illinois and lived there for her entire upbringing, graduating from Northwestern University with a degree in Education. Upon graduation, her job search took her west, all the way to Whittier, California, where she began her teaching career. Aside from a stint early in her career as a United Airlines stewardess, teaching remained Marge’s lifelong profession.
“I just love children,” she says. “When I taught at Stanford Elementary in Palo Alto, the kids were the children of Stanford professors. They were so
curious, so engaged. They really loved to learn and they seemed to also love me.”
It’s no secret to see what the children loved about Marge. She’s sharp and funny. A good storyteller too. Marge tells me about how she met her beloved husband, Donald, who was himself a Stanford University graduate and lifelong teacher.
“We met at a party thrown by a mutual friend,” she says, “and just 9 ½ years later, we got married!” she laughs.
When asked why the courtship was so long, Marge tells me that she and Donald, or “Don” as she affectionately calls him, went their separate ways
after initially dating, but always remained in touch. A moment of reflection a few years down the road prompted Marge to confide in a mutual friend that she missed Don. That friend took the news to Don, who immediately phoned Marge and asked for a date. This time around, it took only a short three months before wedding bells rang for the reunited lovebirds. A testament to the couple’s shared love of teaching and children, Marge invited her entire 4th grade class to her wedding to Don.
“Most of them came too,” she recalls, “It was really a fun time!”
Once married, a family quickly followed and Marge and Don had two children of their own, a daughter, Christina, and a son, Charlie, both still local to the Bay Area. Today, Marge has three grandchildren too – and enjoys frequent visits with them around Burlingame.
Relationships are central to Marge’s life. She enjoys having family nearby and is still connected to many longtime friends whom she visits with during lunch outings and at the Senior Center for bridge. When asked about her views on life, Marge says, “I am a peacekeeper, pretty easygoing. I just think
people should act with love toward one another.”
Her laid-back attitude has been a great fit with Sterling Court, where Marge has resided since March. “I like it here. Everyone is very friendly and
I feel very welcomed,” she says with an easy smile.
Read this article and more in our November newsletter.
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