Irene Marshall, 95, formerly of Hope Valley, passed away peacefully on Thursday, May 7, 2020 at the Westerly Health Center. Born on April 11, 1925 in Liverpool, England, she was the daughter of the late Charles and Amelia (Borthwick) Marshall. She leaves one sister, Jean Cowley in England, 11 nieces and nephews and countless beloved family members and friends. She was predeceased by five sisters; Bertha Marshall, Amelia Balshaw, Dorothy Swiss, Mary Forster and Beryl Inman.
Irene grew up in Liverpool, experiencing many wonderful and tragic happenings in her younger days. She attended the triumphant opening of the Mersey Tunnel by King George V and Queen Mary in 1936 and saw the launch of the largest Cunard liner ship at the time, RMS Mauretania in 1939. In that same year, she and her siblings were abruptly evacuated from Liverpool to Wales, leaving their family and mostly ending their education, to live on farms with people they had never met. Irene was called back home a few months later when her father became very ill and soon passed. May 1941 her home was destroyed during the German blitz while she and her mother hid in the basement air-raid shelter. A neighboring family took them in until they were able to find a permanent home. Irene worked from 15 years old, first in a factory, then Woolworths, followed by WW2 munitions work, and the Telephone Company “doing highly classified work”. Her life was changed forever, when in April 1951 she gave her life to Jesus and dedicated herself to teaching children scripture and the way of the Lord.
Irene immigrated to the US in May 1963 and lived with her sister, Dorothy and her family. She joined St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Warwick, RI where she led numerous youth groups. As a medical secretary, Irene served as President of the Kent Country Medical Association and VP of the RI Medical Association. As a self-taught pastry chef, she became the “go-to” person for special occasion cakes. Retiring from her career in 1990, she moved from Warwick to Hope Valley and joined New Hope Chapel. During her retirement years she embraced her family, friends and church with love and devotion, often inviting those over for “real British tea parties” and always volunteering her time and talent to families in need. She was an Angel to all whom she touched.
Due to the current circumstances surrounding COVID19, a celebration of her life will be held at New Hope Chapel at a future date when family and friends can be together. A burial service for the family will be held at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to New Hope Chapel Food Pantry, Hope Valley, RI.
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