Margaret Merrill

Obituary of Margaret Merrill

Margaret Kirkwood Menzies Merrill died early March 9, 2015 at her home in Skillman, NJ, where she had lived for four years. She had previously resided in Princeton Junction, NJ from 1965 to 2010. Margaret was born in Richmond, VA and lived in that area throughout her childhood with the exception of a year in Scotland with her parents' families during the Depression. She attended Mary Washington College, graduating in 1951 with a degree in Spanish. The Alumnae Placement office encouraged her to accept a primary school teaching job, starting a career that spanned over forty years, taking off only a few years to start a family before being lured back to the profession that was her calling. While teaching in Martinsville, VA, she met her future husband, David Dayton Merrill, a DuPont employee. They married in 1955 and moved to Wilmington, DE, and then Charlotte, NC, before finally settling permanently in Princeton Junction, NJ. She is best known for her gifted teaching, and she wove her love of art, music, literature, science, and the humanities into the classroom where many hundreds of children were infected with the joy of learning. Her husband died in 1985, and she continued teaching until her retirement in 1995. She then filled her days with church activities, grandchildren and a determination to gather all the good books she came across and give them a home. She is survived by her sister, Jean Menzies Pleasants of Ashland, VA and her husband Joseph; her younger brother John Menzies and his wife Shirley of Mechanicsville, VA, and her sister-in-law, Janet Menzies, the widow of Margaret's youngest brother, Walter Menzies, Jr., of Mechanicsville, VA. Also surviving are two daughters: Margaret Elisabeth Walls and her husband John, of Salisbury, NC, and Lynn Ann Cornell and her husband David, of Princeton, NJ, and their two children, Marjorie Kirkwood Cornell of North Brunswick, NJ and James Ellerson Cornell of Atlanta, GA, and a rich circle of extended family and friends. A memorial service in celebration of her life and in witness to the resurrection will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 21st at her church home, Nassau Presbyterian Church, 61 Nassau St., Princeton. Contributions may be made to Nassau Presbyterian Church, the Trenton Children's Chorus, Crisis Ministries of Princeton and Trenton or Centurion Ministries. Arrangements are under the direction of The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, Princeton.
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