Marjorie Kendall (née Dawson), 96, of Holmes Beach, died Dec. 7.
She was born in 1920 in England, where she learned to drive from her father, a Rolls Royce mechanic. She served as a driver in the Women’s Royal Navy during World War II. Proud of her time in the Wrens, she told stories of driving officers on urgent missions through fog and darkness on unlit roads, from which all signage had been removed, during bombing raids.
She also told stories of parties and dances with friends in the armed forces, describing her service in the most positive terms.
She died 51 weeks after losing her husband of 66 years, Dr. Colin “Digger” Kendall. She met him playing tennis while he was a medical student. They married in 1949 in London and moved in 1951 to Australia, his country of birth.
In 1954, they returned to England, then lived in Virginia, New York, Florida and New Jersey. In the 1990s, they retired to Anna Maria Island, where they had vacationed 30 years earlier.
A strong and loving soul, cheerful and talkative, Mrs. Kendall had many friends all over the world and she visited relatives and friends in England until she was in her 90s. She liked having visitors from overseas, liked entertaining and especially liked telling and hearing stories. She loved getting dressed up, loved shopping for clothes and never had a blond, wavy hair out of place.
Throughout her life, she worked as a proofreader, manuscript reader and editor for publishing houses in London and for Educational Testing Services in Princeton. An enthusiastic and avid reader, she kept a reading log including plot summaries and brief critiques. She could recite dozens of poems by heart.
She wrote stories, essays and poetry, earning the title of “Poet Laureate” of the Women’s Club.
She enjoyed crossword puzzles and playing other games, such as Scrabble. She and her husband played tennis enthusiastically and well.
Her whole life, she loved going to the theater, especially in London and on Broadway. She also enjoyed acting, taking part in productions at school in England and in community and regional theater groups, including small roles in musicals. After moving to Anna Maria Island, she took part in the Off Stage Ladies.
She loved all animals, especially dogs, and donated generously to animal charities.
Despite suffering from dementia, she remained interested in current events and especially liked watching the BBC broadcast of the “real news,” by which she meant news from Europe. She used email to keep up with friends and family on three continents, and enjoyed watching “Downton Abbey,” singing along with showtunes, and going to watch the sunset near the Sandbar in Anna Maria. Her house was always decorated with flowers.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 14, 2017, at the Episcopal Church of the Annunciation, 4408 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach, to be followed by an informal celebration of life at her home.
She is survived by son Colin; daughters Valerie Stern and Gillian “Jill”; grandchildren Lucy Riter, Chloe Kendall, John “Jack,” Laurie Stern and Jenna Stern.
Lee Anne Metz
Lee Anne Metz (nee Nordmann) died Dec. 15. She was born in 1945 in Sonoma, California. She moved to Sacramento, California, in her freshman high school year and showed her self reliance and independent spirit by emancipating herself while a high school junior and working nights and weekends at a hamburger stand.
She graduated from Sacramento State College summa cum laude in psychology and spent a trying year as a counselor in a delinquent girls’ home. She was then selected by Travelers Insurance to become one of the first two female claims adjustors in the United States. After several years, Travelers promoted her into their legal malpractice unit in San Diego.
Several years later, she became an investigator for the San Diego City Attorney’s office and retired in her mid-40s after 10 years there.
She met her husband, John, in her early 20s and they married on the 20th anniversary of their meeting.
In retirement, she became very involved in quilting and fascinated by batik fabric, a hand-dyed fabric utilizing a resist dye process and molten wax. She traveled to take batiking classes to Java and Bali, Indonesia, where the finest batik was made.
Intrigued by the batik paintings done on cotton she saw in Java, she began to import paintings to sell them to quilters, who would incorporate the designs into their quilts. What started as a hobby turned into a successful business and Lee Anne’s Batiks became the largest batik importer in retail and wholesale sales throughout the states. After five years, she sold the business and it continues today.
The batik itch disrupted her second retirement, and she started Batik Textiles, designing batik yardage used in quilts and clothing. That company had 60 dyers and craftsmen and a warehouse in Bali. It had more than 1,500 accounts in the United States, as well as distributors in Canada, Australia and Europe. She sold that company and retired again after five years.
A winter trip to Florida became a permanent move after she fell in love with the warm Gulf waters and sugar sand of Anna Maria Island. After only three years in Bradenton Beach, Mrs. Metz was diagnosed with end-stage cancer and passed after a difficult seven months of treatment.
She was active in dog rescue organizations in both California and Florida and a generous contributor for her cause.
A celebration of life is being planned in the spring.
Mrs. Metz is survived by her husband, John; niece Kim Johnson and her husband; three grand nieces and agrand nephew, all of Bradenton; and brother, Larry Nordmann, of Auburn, California.
Nicholas Todd Smith
Nicholas T. Smith, 26, of Marshfield, Wisconsin, died Dec. 14 in a work-related accident.
He was born Dec. 1, 1990, in Belleville, Illinois to Nancy Jarvis and Todd Smith. At the age of 5, he and his mother moved to Anna Maria Island, where his love of sports began. He excelled in soccer, football and basketball.
He graduated from Manatee High School in May 2009 and continued his education at Manatee Tech, where he received his associate degree.
He spent most of his childhood summers in Wisconsin and moved there permanently in 2013 to be closer to his father. He became a welder at A&B Process Systems Corporation in Stratford, Wisconsin.
He enjoyed camping with his family in Wisconsin and hanging out with family and friends when he was in Florida. Other hobbies included playing a round of golf, Sunday afternoon football and cooking up his own original creations. Most of all he loved spending time with his pride and joy, his son Jaxson. Also, his fiance Paige, his family and his beloved dog Mia.
A service will be at 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 23, at Life Tributes Funeral Home in Spencer, Wisconsin. A celebration of life will be held at a later date in Florida. Life Tributes Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Share condolences at www.lifetributesfuneralhome.com.
He is survived by father Todd of Marshfield, Wisconsin; mother Nancy Jarvis of Bradenton; fiancé Paige Schuh of Marshfield; son Jaxson Carter of Marshfield; step-mother Katie of Marshfield; sisters Dezirea and husband Dylan Hitt Leonard, Dakota, all of Marshfield, and Natalie and husband Chris Shaffer of Anna Maria Island; brother Nathan Rowe and wife Amie and their children of Bradenton; grandparents Kip and wife Sharon of Cuba, Missouri; aunt Kelly and husband Joseph Flynn of Dyer, Indiana; uncles Alan Jarvis of Collinsville, Illinois, Paul and wife Sue Jarvis of Troy, Illinois, John and wife Glynda Jarvis of Collinsville, Illinois; nephew Gaige and wife Leah Herranz Bailey and niece Paighton Hall, all of Florida; and his loyal dog Mia.
Sheridan Teachout III
Sheridan Teachout III, 78, of Anna Maria, died Dec. 15. He was born in Lakeland and had spent most of his life in Florida.
He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy.
There will be no local service at this time. Brown & Sons Funeral Homes & Crematory 43rd Street Chapel is in charge of arrangements. Condolences may be made to brownandsonsfuneral.com.
He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Rebecca; sons Steven Joseph and wife Michelle of Steamboat Springs, Colorado, and Robert David and wife Liu Hsin of Memphis, Tennessee; and two granddaughters.
Mercedes Kiniry Graham Thornburg
Mercedes Kiniry Graham Thornburg, 88, died Dec. 19.
She grew up in Kansas City, Missouri, and attended Lillis High School and College of St. Teresa (Avila). She and her husband, Graydon, moved to Lake Tapawingo, Jackson County, Missouri, in 1955. Graydon died in 1980.
She and her second husband, Jon, moved to Anna Maria Island in 1985. They were founding members of the Artists’ Guild of Anna Maria Island. And she was active in local politics, running for Holmes Beach City Council in the 1990.
She was a consummate patriot and Democrat. She was a past president of the Friends of the Island Library, as well as a member of Trinity Lutheran Church, where she had served on the council and vicar team and as an usher.
Services were to be held at Trinity Lutheran Church, 2200 26th St. W. followed by a celebration of life at the Mt. Vernon Clubhouse, 4701 Independence Drive, Bradenton, between noon and 2 p.m. Memorial donations may be made to Trinity Lutheran Church or Tidewell Hospice.
Survivors include daughters Gloria Graham Hickman, Gina Graham and husband Fred Chavez and Gilda Brinkley and husband Gregg; grandchildren Lacy McCluer, Dan Hilgedick, Casey Hickman, Lauren Mohart, Marin Chavez Collins, Kinsey and Elena Chavez, Max and Val Brinkley and five great-great grandchildren.