April 2, 2021
On April 26 2021, Marilyn Elizabeth Streets Kime, the matriarch of 7 children, 15 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren died, at home, in Williamsburg, Virginia. Over the decades, Marilyn has sung many fretful children to sleep. But on this day, she took her last breath while listening to the innocent voices of her great-grandchildren singing "You are my Sunshine", soothing her into eternal sleep.
Born in Delmar NY on October 15, 1934 to parents William and Ruth Streets and brother Bill, Marilyn grew up with parents that emphasized the importance of doing your best for yourself and for others. "Give to the world the best that you have and the best will come back to you." (Madeline Bridges). To that end, Marilyn graduated as a registered nurse and completed a masters in counseling.
She married Edward Kime, Jr in 1960 and raised 7 children. In over 50+ years of marriage, Ed and Marilyn moved 12 different times in 9 different states east of the Mississippi river.
Many school years began in different places, but summer was always the same. Mom worked to give us a home, anchoring our hearts to a place as steady as grindstone and rejuvenating as a clear, cool river. Every year, she packed a station wagon with 7 kids and a dog and drove, by herself, 2-3 days to reach the 1000 Islands in upstate NY. There she spent the summer months on Chub Island in a 2-bedroom cabin with no electricity, no potable water or bathing facilities. Nearly every day, she chose a few children to row to the neighboring Grindstone Island (where her father was born), to walk inland to the church well and haul drinking water in milk jugs back home. For this, her grandchildren named her Grandma Row-Row.
Her legacy? Every family member can swim like a fish in the clear waters of the St Lawrence River, row a boat with precision, pick berries in the woods (and the scars to prove it) and knows every word to the dinner prayer/song "Oh the Lord is good to me." Marilyn has grandchildren spread across the United States. But because of her, we have shared experiences, treasured family rituals and a home, firmly built in our hearts. And so even though she is gone, in every swim in the river, in every walk to the church and to every child we sing "Row, Row, Row your boat," the heartbeat of Marilyn will be rowing along with us.
Marilyn's funeral service will be held on Saturday, July 17, at 3 PM at Christ Episcopal Church, Clayton with Pastor Lisa Busby presiding, followed by burial in Clayton Cemetery. Local arrangements are entrusted with Cummings Funeral Service, Inc., Clayton and online condolences to her family may be posted at www.cummingsfuneral.com.