Marjorie Elizabeth Sandoz
  • 70 years old
  • Date of birth: Jun 5, 1945
  • Place of birth:
    Portland, Oregon, United States
  • Date of passing: Dec 13, 2015
  • Place of passing:
    Portland, Oregon, United States
Let the memory of Marjie be with us forever
Marjie passed away on Sunday, December 13th.  She died peacefully and quickly at home under hospice care with Rod, son Derek, and sister Jan by her side.  As you know, she had been dealing with cancer for the past year and a half.     Fortunately, she was able to see and hear from many of you in the past few weeks.  Her desire is to be cremated and have her ashes placed on the top of Neahkahnie mountain overlooking Manzanita.  Last May, she was able to hike to the top of Neahkahnie for the last time with Rod and good friends on a beautiful spring day.   In lieu of a funeral or memorial service, Marjie asked that we set up this memorial website where you are invited to share your memories, stories, photos, and thoughts for Rod, Derek, Sunita, Izzyie and all of you to see.  We have shared some photos of Marjie in the Gallery section of the website. 

We know Marjie will be dearly missed by family and friends.

With love,

Rod, Derek and Sunita 
Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Ana Rodriguez on 7th June 2017

"Dear Margie, you are and will be, forever in my heart, my dear sister, and really true: Forever missed! always Love you."

This tribute was added by Don Kunz on 6th June 2017

"My wife Sandy and I enjoyed the companionship of Marjie and Rod on many trips:  Costs Rica, Umbria, Moab, Equador.  We think of that often especially when we are travelling and all the fun we had together.  We surely miss those days."

This tribute was added by Judy Graves on 5th June 2017

"I spent Memorial weekend at my cabin in Cannon Beach.  It was a chilly, misty weekend but a good book and a warm fire is just what I needed. In the beach house journal I began writing down the names of family members and friends who I hold close to my heart and have left a trail of memories here in this small abode. Marjie, among them, of course...our beach walks and long philosophical talks on just about every subject, spiced with Marjie's witty comments and timely interpretations. And, I remember that it was Rod who helped me design the front deck, years ago, and made a list of materials I would need to order for my contractor to build it. Somewhere packed away in boxes I have photos of Marjie, Rod and Derek, age 5, with others enjoying smores in the backyard fire pit.  Marjie, I miss you and feel such gratitude for the friendship that we shared over a time span of 50 years.  I think of you often.  Love, Judy"

This tribute was added by Lynnd Steenslid on 5th June 2017

"While I don't need a tickler to remember dear, sweet Marjie, this is certainly a wonderful way to deliver a smile to all who loved her. I  hope you can take comfort in knowing we all miss her and get constant reminders of her laughter, friendship and insights.  Love to you all.  Keith and Lynnda"

This tribute was added by Sandra Kunz on 15th December 2016

"I think of my dear friend Marjie almost every day and miss her sense of humor, wisdom and friendship."

This tribute was added by Michele Laing Stemler on 15th December 2016

"I have the great fortune to hike regularly. When I knew of Marjie's health struggles I began looking for the most old soul, old growth tree on each hike to hold my palm to it and send Marjie good energy. Since her passing I continue to do so because I feel it is a way I can still connect with her strong spirit. I feel blessed to have known Marjie and shared teaching with her in Costa Rica.
Muchos abrazos de

This tribute was added by Terri Debolock on 14th December 2016

"I am most grateful for the array of experiences Marjie & I shared during our 30+ year friendship.  I feel her presence. Blessings to all her family."

This tribute was added by Derek Sandoz on 14th December 2016

"Miss you Mom, Dad and I were up on NeahKanie today. It was a gorgeous sunny day and we felt your presence. Love, Derek"

This tribute was added by Steve Pierson on 13th December 2016

"Merry Christmas, Izzie.
Please tell Sunita and Derek and Grandpa Rod you love them. Feel free to tell them as often as you please.
Again, Merry Christmas and have fun in New Orleans.

Steve (Rod's log cabin co-builder)"

This tribute was added by Pam Hayden on 13th December 2016

"You are in our hearts all year round, but we'll especially remember you at Christmas and drink a toast to our beautiful piano player! I have saved so many of your witty cards and enjoy reading them from time to time. They bring your joy and zest for life into mine. Best to your loving family."

This tribute was added by Allison Skurtveit on 3rd July 2016

"After my recent visit to Portland, the first one without Marjie physically there, I was moved to tears of sorrow and missing her, but also to tears of deep gratitude for knowing her and the bright light that she cast upon everyone she knew & loved.

Most of my days were spent with Rod, as well as some time with Derek, Sunita, and Izzyie. It was incredibly meaningful to spend time with Marjie's family, continuing to know her through those who loved and knew her so deeply. Between time at Marjie & Rod's house in Portland and a beautiful trip out to Manzanita, I would regularly acknowledge Marjie and her presence, especially when I wish she could be there, walking by my side; And in a very precious way, she was there.

I am incredibly lucky to have crossed paths with Marjie. Time spent with her was a true gift. From the day we met in our first mindfulness class, I felt an immediate connection with her radiating compassion, kind eyes, and beauty. She seemed so grounded and present; Through the years of getting to know her, my admiration and love just naturally grew. Whether we were practicing mindfulness, doing yoga, walking in the woods, sharing a meal, or having a transatlantic phone conversation, she never ceased to warm my heart and soul.

One of the most important gifts from Marjie was the honest way in which she supported and truly listened to me; I am forever grateful for her relentless encouragement to live to my fullest potential with joy and confidence, and to find a partner who would help me feel loved and enjoyed each and every day.

Thank you, Rod, for sharing precious time together with countless memories of Marjie, your beautiful wife, and for the encouragement to "carry on." Each day, it felt like she was accompanying us on our next adventure, which we could subsequently check off our list. And thank you, Derek, for sharing time, laughter, and memories of your dear mother. Thank you Izzyie, for your gigantic hugs, big smile, and fun stories about your amazing grandmother. I am so sorry to you all for your tremendous loss.

Marjie was an extraordinary human being and I will always carry her deep in my heart. May we all continue to share the sacred task of keeping Marjie alive through her kind spirit, good stories, and her incessant love of life."

This tribute was added by Barbara Sandoz on 5th June 2016

"We have thought often about Marjie in the months since December, and so, especially today, our thoughts are centered on her and each family member that must surely be missing her a great deal. A year ago, after the death of a close family member, we were comforted to realize they were experiencing their first birthday in heaven. So whether here or there, it is definitely Marjie's special day."

This tribute was added by Doris Fong on 31st January 2016

"Marjie knew how to live. She often said of life, "It is all such a gift," and she unwrapped each of her days with delight and determination. Marjie knew how to celebrate; she celebrated her days with music, dinner parties, dancing, travel, adventure, good books, surprises, and all of us. Marjie's capacity for laughter and compassion dispelled despair and darkness and reminded us that life is mostly about joy and light.
     She was never her illness; cancer was certainly not, we agreed, the most important or interesting thing about her. Throughout her life she met all of her challenges with courage, clear priorities and unwavering realism. Marjie was indelibly her own wonderful self, and, even during her illness, she insisted on doing everything she loved, everything that made her life a gift. Her legacy to all of us are days that were lived so fully...a life of love and laughter, family and friends and wonder. Marjie, herself, was a gift and she touched us all."

This tribute was added by Rod Sandoz on 17th January 2016

"Like Derek, I also want to thank all of you who have contributed so many pictures, heartfelt comments and great stories about Marjie and her influence on all of us.

It has only been a little over a month since Marjie died.  Life and the house seems so empty without her here.  Everything I do and see reminds me of her.  Now there is no one to talk to, laugh with or marvel at how crazy things seem to be getting.  No one knew me better than Marjie.  She put up with me for a lot of years.  Marjie was truly someone special.

One of the brochures from the hospice people says "The loss of someone we love always changes our world completely."  That's certainly the way it feels.

Marjie's diagnosis of stage 4 ovarian cancer was an unbelievable shock.  None of us who knew Marjjie well would have ever thought that she would not live to be at least 90.

She was always the one to eat right, take her vitamins, exercise, meditate, go to yoga class and try to walk everyday.  This was definitely not the way it was supposed to go and it's not fair and it's NOT right.

Marjie was the most organized person I've ever known.  She always had a plan for the day, the month and the year.  She had a list of all the things that needed to be done or someplace we needed to go next.  Thank God we retired when we did.

In the year and a half that Marjie dealt with her cancer, surgery, chemo, naturopathic and Chinese medicine, Qigong, meditation, and positive self healing-as always she did it her way.  Upbeat, hopeful, cramming in as many trips and time with friends and family, especially Izzyie, as possible.

Marjie's final goal was to push through and make sure that she would be able to have a last Thanksgiving at Timberline.  After that she was ready to let go and thankfully the end came quickly.

Life is short.   My advice to you all is don't ever miss an opportunity to hug a loved one and enjoy every minute you have together.  Derek, Sunita and Izzyie have been keeping me busy, including me in everything possible which has been a big help.

But it is still very hard for me to accept the fact that Marjie is really gone and to contemplate life without her.  I am so thankful for all the good years that we did have together.

Good-bye Marjie.

"I love you so."


This tribute was added by Derek Sandoz on 12th January 2016

"Thank you so much everyone for sharing your memories of my mom, Marjie.  My mom. I'm the only one who can say that Marjie was my mom and I will be forever grateful for that.  Some of my earliest memories were of my mom looking into my eyes while our faces were upside down and she would make me laugh so hard. From the beginning she taught me that life should be about finding joy.  But she also showed me by example the toughness that is needed to make a living in this world. I watched her drive round trip to Hillsboro every day for 30 years for her work as a counselor at various schools around the district. Most mornings as I was growing up she would already be gone when I got up. But I knew every single day she would have breakfast left for me.  When I was about 13 and I must have been going through a growth spurt because I overslept and missed the bus. I woke up around 11am. I called my mom letting her know I had overslept and I wasn't at school.  She told me to start walking. So I did. Nearly 5 miles. When I arrived at school the buses were already loading the kids up for the end of the day.  I got on my bus without going into the school having learned my lesson.

At 15 I got my learners permit to drive. So, the very day I received my learners permit, and the first day I ever drove a car my mom agreed to let me drive her and my good friend Renato to the Tacoma Dome to see The Who in concert.  She said the best way to learn things is by doing.  I did alright.  Soon we were entrenched in 5 o clock, five lanes wide, heavy traffic between Tacoma and Seattle looking for our bed and breakfast exit.  Renato told me that sitting in the backseat as I tried to figure out how to change lanes is the most scared he's been before or since.  But, we made it to the concert, and we had a great time. At 16 I wanted to go to a Grateful Dead concert. I was overjoyed when my mom said as long as those geezers can lift up their guitars of course you can go. By trusting me, she had opened the door to a great experience for me which broadened my horizons and brought me so much happiness during those years. Later I made her a mixed tape. My sophomore year of high school my report card was not the best. She slammed down two community college applications on our dining room table and said "take your pick, and you're paying for it!" I got the message that there would be no assistance with paying for college unless I improved my academics, which I did.

My mom was incredibly generous. She kept in touch with people she had counseled in school all of her life. Through an old friend, she got to know a 97 year old lady, Alice, who lived nearby in a nursing home.  She visited Alice so much and brought her so many gifts that the entire staff assumed my mom was Alice's daughter.  Lord knows she was always there for me. Through job losses (yes, plural), and just the knocks that life can give you she was there for me, every time. When Izzyie was born, my mom was there with Sunita every day. Buying diapers, buying food, cleaning dishes.  My neighbors thought she had moved in with us.

My parents were a couple for 54 years. I've been spending as much time as I can with my dad, Rod, but of course he is crushed.  I have never seen a guy more devoted to his wife. If you've read this far, keep reaching out to him.  He doesn't really know how to live yet without her and he will need all of our support.  Which brings me to the hardest part of this of  all for me, my daughter Izzyie.  Izzyie and my mom were very close.  They wrote and illustrated books together for hours on end at my house.  They were close to finishing a book called "The Bad Bad Nanny News" which must have been over 300 pages long.  My mom made Izzyie birthday books full of photos every year in June which of course either rhymed, were set to music, or read as an original song.  But this year, she turned over the responsibility to Izzyie in her book, because I think deep down she knew it would be her last.

What a great friend, wife, sister, and daughter, but most of all what a great mom.

Love always,

Your son,


This tribute was added by Sharley Bryce on 30th December 2015

"It is hard to accept that a life so well lived is gone from us.  Margie was quite simply adorable and always positive.  A snack for her was a beautifully ripe piece of melon.  Our children grew up exploring the adventures of school and family and values.  I will always be grateful for Margie's fondness for people and life and living.  She leaves for us all a great example to live by."

This tribute was added by penny mcdonald on 27th December 2015

"We had a little gathering to honor Marjie today--Michele Stemler, Marilyn Mc Donald, Marisa Bevington, Karen Graham, Penny Mc Donald. We all met Marjie through Partners of the Americas, the Oregon-Costa Rica chapter. Rod and Marjie went to Costa Rica, they hosted guests from Costa Rica. Marjie worked on the artist exchange, the English teaching program, the sister school program...We became friends and huge admirers of Marjie's courage, creativity, strength, supportive nature, sense of humor. I am particularly grateful to Marjie for her support of my dream of writing a bilingual children's picture book which flowed out of our artist exchange. She gave me perspective and advice at important points--she gave me a great idea for how kids could respond to the book. That idea will live on as I work with children in more than one country. Thank you, Marje! We all miss you!"

This tribute was added by Ron Woodward on 27th December 2015

"To Rod, Derek, Sunita, Jan -- and others who have treasured memories surrounding Marjie's life: I never felt I got acquainted with Marjie; however, she was my "first cousin-in-law" through the Woodward clan. (My Dad was a brother of Winifred [Woodward] Sandoz Rod's mother.) Anyway, in this severe time of loss, may memories and prayers sustain you all! - Ron Woodward"

This tribute was added by Kate Thompson on 27th December 2015

"Where has this cold come from?
"It comes from the death of your friend."

Will I always, from now on, be this cold.
"No, it will diminish. But always it will be with you."

What is the reason for it?
"Wasn't your friendship always as beautiful as a flame."

A poem by Mary Oliver"

This tribute was added by Janice Woita on 26th December 2015

"Many of you knew Marjie as a traveling partner, confidant, friend.  I knew her as my sister:  There when I needed her. I knew that all I had to do was call and say, "I need some help" and she was there.  Women At The Crossroads...yes that was the name of a workshop that she found when I was casting about for what to do with my life as my sons were growing up.  I became a teacher because of this workshop and Marjie's support.  When my Rod died; that's right...we had My Rod and Marjie's Rod, she was right behind me with whatever I needed to help me get through those first agonizing days.  Do I miss her?  Of course, but I know she's still behind me urging me on to be brave and a little daring; just as she was for really all of her life.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Marjie's Rod for loving my sister so very deeply.  He supported her and was there for her in so many ways especially during her "finding herself" years.  His love and devotion were no more apparent than during these past 18 months.  I know, without a doubt, that he helped Marjie  to live these last days of her life on her terms.  Rod, thank you for loving my sister with a love that was unquestioning, faithful and profoundly deep."

This tribute was added by Judy Graves on 24th December 2015

"When I think of Marjie, how she lived her life and faced her mortality, I’m reminded of the words of one of my best-loved poets, Mary Oliver.  

When Death Comes....(an excerpt) by Mary Oliver

...when death comes I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering...
And therefore I look upon everything as a brotherhood and sisterhood
And I look upon time as no more than an idea...

I think of each life as a flower, as common
As the field daisy, and as singular,
And each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
Tending, as all music does, toward silence,
And each body a lion of courage, and something
Precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
If I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
Or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

Marjie, you were never just a visitor.  You were an integral part of so many lives.  You lived and loved fully and are missed deeply."

This tribute was added by Steve Pierson on 19th December 2015

"I've been designing and building pole houses and log cabins and out houses and beach houses and home additions with Rod and, in the beginning, with his dad Carl, for over 40 years. It's one of the highlights of my life. Marjie was a big influence in helping these wonderful projects be what they are today. Even the outhouse up the hill from the log cabin has a sign inside which I think was her doing. It says "what happens in the outhouse, stays in the outhouse". Recently the interior of the log cabin has become somewhat more crowded with the addition of a sofa brought up from the original cabin for fireside seating. Marjie's suggestion, I believe. There have been discussions of a possible east wing addition to the log cabin to create a larger dining area for guests. Marjie laughed when I described it to her before Thanksgiving. I want to promise to all of Marjie's family and friends that I will do my utmost to insure that Rod and I will design and build the east wing to the log cabin and it will be called Marjie's Dining Hall (subject to discussion) and there will be an on-site dedication ceremony with food and drink for all. Probably not for awhile. We're not the fastest workers anymore. Rest in peace, Marjie. We all loved you."

This tribute was added by Don Kunz on 19th December 2015

"In addition to trading visits several times a year with Marjie and Rod in Portland and Bend, my wife, Sandy and I shared many trips with them.  They remain our all time favorite traveling companions.  Here are a few of many memories:  Sixteen Oregonians singing on a bus in Costa Rica, including an original song by Marjie which helped us laugh off some crazy experiences.   Marjie driving a stick shift VW Passat like Mario Andretti through narrow streets of hilltop towns in Umbria; having to make four very small Italian pots of coffee every morning to go with the sticky buns Rod was so fond of for breakfast.  Both Marjie and Rod generously tolerating my Native American Flute music reverberating off slot canyons in Grand Staircase Escalante where we were hiking.  The daily search for Rod’s Wall Street Journal in Cuenca; zip lining through a rain forest outside Mindo where we had to wear guide-supplied heavy wet leather gloves that smelled like really bad cheese.   No matter where we traveled, we could count on Marjie for sideways observations or a spot-on accent that produced gales of laughter and we could depend on Rod to navigate more accurately than any GPS.  Sandy and I were looking forward to having them to visit us in Tucson in February.  Now traveling without these wonderful friends will not be the same.
And we will miss corresponding regularly with Marjie by email.  She was such a talented writer who could make anything fascinating no matter how small.  We are so happy to see that Izzyie has inherited and is carrying on her grandmother’s way with words, her natural gift for storytelling.
Because Marjie seemed so energetic in Ecuador, Sandy and I were shocked to learn of Marjie’s advanced cancer, detected soon after her return.  And when traditional Western medical procedures proved ineffective, Marjie heroically undertook the enormous responsibility of trying to rid her body of the cancer that chemo couldn’t kill.  Despite some setbacks, she remained remarkably determined, disciplined, and resilient.   Rod was enormously supportive during this difficult struggle; no one could have asked for a better partner.  Both Marjie and Rod have been inspirational during this trying time.  Sandy and I feel very fortunate to have enjoyed Marjie’s good company, and despite her passing we hope to continue our friendship with Rod.
Many thanks to Derek for creating this lovely memorial to his mom."

This tribute was added by Barb Williams on 19th December 2015

"Marjie certainly touched our lives in so many ways and we will miss her. Kent and I will remember the spirit with which she loved life. Whether it was the outdoors, cooking or most of all love of family, her enthusiasm radiated and made us happier too. We loved her musical talents bringing so much joy to holiday gatherings as we sang carols and she accompanied on the piano.
We picture her in our mind as smiling and our sadness of her loss is eased. Her spirit will live on in our hearts and because of that, we are so blessed to have known this special person.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to her dear family."

This tribute was added by Barbara Sandoz on 19th December 2015

"It has been four and a half days since reading of Marjie's passing. We were shocked that it came so suddenly. It's not that we expected her to be with us forever, but her life had been sustained for some time after the diagnosis and it always seemed she continued on with so many worthwhile activities and relationships. I had hopes of at least one more good communication with her. It's taken a few days to even be able to craft a few inadequate words to pay tribute to her and relay sympathy to Rod and family.
Marjie was an "add-on" member to the Sandoz clan, just as Ardie and I are. When together at cousin reunions we laughed and bonded over not being core members of the clan. I will always remember her sense of humor that brought down walls and brightened moments she was part of.
I so respect that she valued people, those in her family and others she knew of who were in need. She acted on those concerns and also wrote about them in emails we exchanged.
I cherish the way she communicated with family in group letters about her journey with this cancer. It gave us further glimpses into her character; a fighter, a lover, a communicator and connector, and a great blessing to all who knew her.
Rod, Derek, Sunita and Issyie, we can't imagine the gaping hole there is and will be for some time. You are in our thoughts and prayers as you reflect and cherish what she added to your lives. May those memories sustain you and warm your hearts.
We have a few photos to sort through and add at a later time.
Thank you for adding this site, a worthy tribute to the legacy she leaves with us."

This tribute was added by sammie krasnow on 18th December 2015

"I've been Marjie's next-door neighbor for the past 12 years. This past week the memories just keep coming...

I'm not a particularly active person and so i have few memories of going out and about with Marjie, except for the odd errand or doctor appointment. There are two events I remember well: one, the Broadway production of "Wicked" (we had THE worst seats in the house--and yet still thought it a marvel. Our heads were ringing after the fact – no high school musical, this. We had fun - we were happy when we left. The other, the theatrical debut of the movie "Avatar" (the beginning – wow, such beauty and creativity. The end, well, such violence, such noise… We could've done without that).

Soon after we moved here, her grandchild Izzyie was born. She lit up! Her schedule filled with babysitting hours. Without thinking, realizing, i said "this child is taking up an awful lot of your time" – but she corrected me and said "no, no, I'm taking up an awful lot of HERS--I want to spend as many minutes as possible with her".

She started writing children's material and published in a few magazines. We attempted our own book writing "club"--which was short-lived, but her abilities and characteristic determination were not. Later she wrote books for Izzyie--beautiful things, treasures--that I know she worked on every year after that.

When she decided to redecorate her house she spent so much time studying feng shui, wanting to get it right. I'd studied this subject--had diagrams and flashcards even! though I had failed utterly in my own efforts.

She picked up library books and we compared notes. Color, furniture placement, composition: metal, cloth, wood--balance.  In the end she got it so exactly right - entering her house every time, I felt a sense of intoxicating calm that I could never replicate. "If you ever leave this house Marjie. I want it. Please let me buy it from you! (as if calm could be purchased).

She had this ability to dive into something headfirst -- learn it, and stick with it.

She added yoga to her curriculum years ago. "Once you're not flexible anymore you've become old". As with everything she was religious--went to yoga classes every single week without fail. She became more flexible (and delighted in it!) and indeed was the youngest 70-year-old ive ever met.

She took up piano and I often heard her practicing like an obedient 12-year-old, astonished at her persistence.

This last year and a half of her life, she searched through healing methods previously foreign to her, committing to them--the bitterest were the Chinese herbs, which I know from experience taste like motor oil. But the sweetest, Qi Gong, required learning, practice - her talents- and she fell in love. (Recommending it to me, she said "Maybe I'm dying, maybe not – and this does take effort--but I love the way this makes me feel. It's like a massage for my soul").

We had similar taste in books and she shared most of her library books -novels, non fiction - never worrying when she had to renew, over and over, because of my slow reading.
She always kept a stack of old New Yorkers for me at her door, because she knew I loved them and knew i couldn't afford to subscribe.

We also had similar political views and frequently I ran over on the last possible night before mailing-in voting to discuss what each bill meant (Rod providing much of the background on this) and then nearly always, casting identical votes.

She cared about people in practical ways. As a single mother, I often went to her, struggling to find the right path, the right way. She struggled with me – no pat of the hand and quick answer. Her care for my daughter was not merely a behind-the-scenes affair though – I cannot count the times she said "anything for Elena"! and how proud she was of her successes.

Her heart was generous.

During the first year living next-door, she learned that I had a genuine fear of Halloween. She said, laughing but kind, that she would protect me from the "horror of costumed children"--and she did, every halloween inviting me into her home.

She liked birds, the wild kind, and had a book that she tried to teach me from. They gave her pleasure. There was a small bird feeder on the back patio and a larger one in the front -a focal point for this small miracle of a garden she and Rod had created.

I remember how upset she was when we got a new (and unfortunately indispensable) cat with herculean hunting abilities. After a few of his "triumphs", the birdfeeders emptied. The sadness on her face--ah! I knew this was no small thing, but no matter how many sleighbells I tethered to that cat, he was still remarkably successful. Still, she forgave me – and him.

I admired her verve for travel. I will admit, too, that I envied it. It seemed there was some impressive trip, nearly every year. "We need to get it all in now", she told me, "before we're too old to move!". Every trip, she and Rod planned carefully and always pulled it off despite all obstacles. As a one time traveler myself, I was amazed by their creative methods. Hotels were rare. One time they stayed with a completely unknown family in Costa Rica – and later had the family stay with them. What an idea!

Six years ago (?) She planned a walking trip through Czechoslovakia. She would have to walk 5 miles a day. 5 miles in one day, every day. Was there nothing she couldnt do? From my bedroom window, I watched her prepare for that. New shoes, determination, rain or shine – the longest daily walks ever.

She was fearless.

Mostly though I remember visiting her at her house through the years. Sharing this and that, catching up, rolling concerns back and forth ...and then diverging on to the days news and the problems of the world--finally, at the end, always deciding that we had done nothing to fix them.

Year and a half ago, I came home to find her sitting on the bench in their front yard. Just home from the doctor, She called me over and said "well, I have cancer". No preamble. A simple statement that came out with a stuttered chuckle of disbelief--then we both laughed, little harder. how absurd life was, how impossible this was.

She had been so diligent about her health for ALL the years I knew her – drinking the most god-awful smoothies every morning – kelp, brewers yeast, liquid multivitamins, fish oil (fish oil!? "it's not as bad as all that – I put some fruit juice in too!"), daily walks, at least a mile, with Rod, the well-rounded meals - that successful weight-watchers year (that she, of course, managed to stick to ever after)...

Yes--It was absurd and seemed a fake piece of news, some punchline of a standup comic, so we could laugh on that one day before it actually sunk in.

When I first moved here, I told people: "I could not of ended up with a better neighbors, had even the gods picked them for me themselves".
That was true--and it was not a first impression that faded – it grew and grew.

My God, how I admired her.
She was my friend.
What better fortune could befall me?"

This tribute was added by Marilyn McDonald on 18th December 2015

"Marjie was such a ray of light! I met her through Partners and was immediately drawn to her spirit. Her wonderful sense of humor, her creative, positive touch to everything made any project more fun. We had many deep conversations despite the irregularity of our getting together. She was so proud of her family! She once told me "I'm lucky in love"…wife, mother, grandmother, sister, friend.  Izzyie, although you and I never met I felt like I knew you through her enthusiasm when she talked about your time together. She lives in my heart, and in the hearts of all of us who had the privilege of knowing her…What a force of courage, grace, generosity, love and life!"

This tribute was added by Kate Thompson on 17th December 2015

"Marjie was introduced to me about 40 years ago, by a mutual friend, who knew we had sons about the same age.  We exchanged childcare, searched for pre-schools together, trick-or-treated, were yoga buddies, and walked around Fairmont countless times, as we tried to navigate the challenging roles of parent, spouse, professional women, and citizens of a troubled world. Our friendship deepened as her father-in-law, Carl Sandoz, became my mother's dear sweetheart, after they both lost their spouses.  She corresponded with my son as he traveled alone for months in Southeast Asia, and it meant so much to him that she admired his sense of adventure. She applauded my daughter's maturing independence as well, generously sharing her sense of confidence in Julia's abilities to do great things. My granddaughters, Zinnia and Ruby, adored her quiet loving ways of listening to their world views, as she patiently made play dough figures with them. Zinnia was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, about a year after Marjie's cancer was diagnosed, and I looked to Marjie to tell me about her experience so that I could better understand what Zinnia was feeling from the effects of the treatment.  This feels like such an enormous loss to me, like an eclipse of the sun, that will go on interminably. I loved her humor, her spunk, her graciousness, her warmth, her determination and loyalty. I loved that she and Rod were such a beautiful couple and that he cared for her so tenderly. I think she always felt surprised that she was loved so much by so many. I don't know how I will explain her passing to Zinnia and Ruby, but I do know that all our lives are richer for having been touched by hers.  Marjie, I am going to imagine that you are one of the brightest stars up there in the dark sky and that you are shining down on us. That will make this easier to bear."

This tribute was added by Virginia Furtwangler on 16th December 2015

"We first met Marjie and Rod as travel companions for a month in Costa Rica.  Since then we have shared good times in group reunions, meals at our tables in Portland and Salem, comic plays, and long conversations by the ocean.  Through these past months we've swapped cards and messages every week.  So while we feel a deep pang of loss, we also know our gain from extended touch with Marjie's brave spirit.  She has coached us through her stages of illness and helped us compose ourselves to face the inevitable.  It is hard to put such a vital being into past tense; she abides within us. --Ginny and Al"

This tribute was added by Drew Evensen on 16th December 2015

"Rod, Derek, Sunita, Izzyie - I wish you much peace and time to remember Marjie and honor her life in your daily routines and thoughts. We will all remember her gentle nature and loving strength and conviction. All my love to you."

This tribute was added by Tony Murczek on 16th December 2015

"Marjie, I only got to spend a short time with you, but I enjoyed every moment.  Thank you for being my teacher, even as I was teaching you Qigong.  Thinking of you, safe travels."

This tribute was added by Pam Hayden on 16th December 2015

"Sweet Marjie will be forever missed and never forgotten. That dimpled smile and twinkly eyes blessed many a 4th of July celebration at our house. Marjie would bring a delicious home made berry cobbler and Rod always was quick with the fire sticks he chopped at the cabin and brought to build a cozy fire by the Lake to watch the fire works by and roast marsh mellows. We will think of you every 4th of July, Marjie.

I will always remember Marjie dressed in pink for a boating excursion  Greg and I made with she and Rod on the Lake not too long ago. She even had on a floppy pink hat.  Such was her attitude toward life – love and embrace every moment and have fun, even facing diversity.  Her writings were so full of honest and inspirational thought, spiked with her natural and tickling humor.  

Marjie and Rod gave Greg and I a sign that hangs in our house. It says: “Laugh until you Tinkle Your Panties”.  Her love of life showed through both in her funny side as well as her serious and thoughtful ways.

Marjie’s piano playing was legendary at our Christmas parties. I pulled out “Marjie’s Songbook” yesterday, which has all the words to the Christmas music she played for us over the years. We all enjoyed singing our hearts out to her wonderful music. She even was able to improvise for our communal rendition of the ’Twelve Days of Christmas’, which was no easy task. We will think of you every Christmas, Marjie.

Marjie and Rod were just like two peas in a pod, so long together and so much fun to be around. I can remember a party where all the guests were congregated talking in the kitchen and Rod and Marjie were in the living room dancing their hearts out.  So heartening to see such a fun loving and endearing relationship.  Such happy folks.

Marjie will stay in all our hearts forever. She will always be with Rod at their wonderful log cabin and when he fells the trees with his friend Steve, peels the logs and hoists them to make walls for the expanded eating area, she will be smiling and rooting him on.

Marjie loved imparting stories about her adored grand daughter. Izzyie gave her so much joy, love and laughter and really made her think.  

Our hearts go out to all of Marjie's loving family. She lived and died with so much courage and grace. She was so insightful in her understanding about life and it’s passing, and was very kind to give us all inspiration about embracing the future with such a peaceful outlook.

Outside the Sandoz family, we all feel blessed to have had Marjie and Rod as our friends. Going forward, we will forever miss Marjie, but Rod will always be our good friend."

This tribute was added by Susan and Mike Vandenburgh on 15th December 2015

"We were fortunate enough to spend some time with Marjie and Rod at their cabin this past October and marveled at her continued graciousness, sense of humor and optimism throughout her battle with cancer.  Rod and Marjie’s complete devotion and adoration of each other made a deep impression on us.   Our hearts and prayers go out to Rod, Derek, Sunita and Izzyie.  We shall miss her smiling face."

This tribute was added by Ali Ray on 15th December 2015

"When I think of Marjie I think of someone who was smart, compassionate, and heart-centered. I'm so grateful to Allison for bringing both her and Rod into my life, even though I haven't gotten to see them very often. Rod, my heart goes out to you and your family  because I know she will be dearly missed (and celebrated!) I feel grateful that my last memories with Marjie included dancing salsa with her in the living room and laughing at the Portland Art Museum. She was a bright, bright spirit."

This tribute was added by Judy Lake on 15th December 2015

"My dear cousin Marjie will be missed by all who knew and loved her.  Her strength and determination during her cancer journey leaves me in awe of her and proud to have been known her.  My heart goes out to her loving family, Rod, Derek, Sunita and Izzyie.  She will be always be my hero!"

This tribute was added by Terri Debolock on 15th December 2015

"Together Marjie & I pondered life happenings & relationship, traveled, hiked, & embraced being during a span of 36 years.  Her grand capacity to step into life fully for herself and with others is a gift that continues to shine.  Marjie’s deep love and commitment to family, in particular her granddaughter Izzyie, opens our hearts.  I miss her physical presence and feel her knowing self.  Marjie’s generosity of spirit is ours to embrace."

This tribute was added by Sarita Navarro on 15th December 2015

"Margie, you will be missed by everyone in my family.   Thank you for share with us in Costa Rica  for 2 times and thank you to open your house to stay Eleutimio and me during our last trip to Oregon,  we had had the opportunity to share with you some important activities with all my family as participated in all the nine days funneral activities of my niece, pilgrimated to Cartago to celebrate the Virgen de los Angeles day, had dinners and trips inside the country, or just had  time talking about ours families, plannings and future.    I will be missed your sweet smile, your sweet voice and your jokes.   You always had gave love to everyone, specially to children.    We had planned the cruiser to Alaska, we were waiting for your recover, if we do it next years you will share with us as a
bright star.    I love you!!!    Kisses and hugs."

This tribute was added by Allison Skurtveit on 15th December 2015

"My dearest Marjie,
You are a brave, beautiful, and wise soul, whom I have been continuously grateful to cultivate a mindful and loving connection with.  You are an incredible human being whom never ceases to value the important things in life: laughter, music, movement, time to reflect & meditate, and being with those you cherish.
It deeply saddens and pains me to lose you, but know that I will always carry you with me.  You are a bright star that has shone love, light and courage into my heart, as well as into the heart of many others.
I love you infinitely."

This tribute was added by Marian Evensen on 15th December 2015

"For a life worth remembering - light a candle in honor of Marjorie Hadley Sandoz, my dear sister- in- law . She continues to shine bright and will live forever in our hearts."

This tribute was added by Neen Fitzwalter on 15th December 2015

"Marjie will be missed by everyone that knew her. She was one of the sweetest human beings that I have ever known. Unfortunately the last time I saw her was July 9th 2015. It was such a great day, we laughed, cried, smiled and had lunch. During lunch I told her that as soon as I was done eating I was going to get my hair cut at The Barbers. She smiled and said that Rod liked my short hair so I said why don't you go  with me and we will have our hair cut at the same time. She didn't bat an eye but quickly smiled and said "sure, why not". Off to the barber shop we went, after 2 cocktails for lunch. She sat in the chair and just smiled and was so cute. A couple days later I received a post card in the mail, it was a photo of her and her new short haircut. The back of the postcard said "I'm a new woman, thanks for the unscheduled hair makeover, I love my hair"  That just touched my heart. The same photo in the right corner of this memorial  page. This is how I will remember my friend Marjie, smiling and looking beautiful.  I taped that photo on my calendar in July and have moved it forward every month so as I walk by my calender every morning I see Marjie and smile. I wish I would have told her that I look at that photo every day.  That would have made her smile. Being a Cancer survivor myself, I understand some of the pain and suffering that Marjie went through. Who knows why some people are taken from this world and why others are given another chance at living. In May 2016 I will celebrate my 5th year as Cancer free. Why wasn't Marjie given that same opportunity? I can't answer that and we will never know. I will miss her greatly."

This tribute was added by Laura Mannen on 14th December 2015

"Today, I am grateful for breath. I just learned that my dear friend, Marjie Sandoz, passed from this life after a valiant and dignified battle with cancer. Marjie truly showed us how living and leaving can be done with grace, humor, and joy. I will always remember her faith in the human spirit and our potential to make this world a brighter place for ourselves, our loved ones, and all its inhabitants. Marjie Sandoz presente!"

This tribute was added by Michele Laing Stemler on 14th December 2015

"I had the privilege of team teaching English in Costa Rica with Marjie in 2012. Through all of our preparations her laughter and insights sustained us. A very special woman who showed both tenacity and grace in all situations."

This tribute was added by Jen Laverdure on 14th December 2015

"Just yesterday I took a walk through Oaks Bottom, saw an egret, ducks, loons and many other birds. I had to battle my own inertia to get out there but I didn't regret it. Which made me think of Marjie who told me she never regretted the decision to go for a walk. I will miss Marjie's generosity. Generosity of time, her thoughts, her encouragement, her humor. My love and thoughts go out to Rod, Derek, Sunita, Izzyie and the rest of her family. Marjie was a phenomenal woman!"

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Derek Sandoz


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