Cover photo for Marynell (Durland)  Kirkwood's Obituary
Marynell (Durland)  Kirkwood Profile Photo
1923 Marynell 2020

Marynell (Durland) Kirkwood

May 25, 1923 — November 26, 2020

Rock Island

Marynell Durland Kirkwood, of Rock Island, Illinois, passed away in her sleep, Thanksgiving Day, November 26, 2020. She was born May 25, 1923 in Franklin Park, Illinois, the daughter of Fred and Freida Hall Durland.

She married her high school sweetheart, Roland Livingstone Kirkwood of Schiller Park, Illinois.

Marynell earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Knox College, Galesburg, Illinois.  While attending she joined Delta Zeta Sorority.  Throughout her life, she remained active in both.

Teaching was her passion.  She was a professional schoolteacher, a Sunday school teacher, and a ballroom dance instructor.

Marynell was active in the church, and in 1963 along with her husband she became a missionary teacher at Woodstock School, the internationally known boarding school in the Himalayan Mountains of India.  She taught English, Journalism (including editing school newspapers, and yearbooks), and Science. She learned Hindi and took yoga lessons. Later, while at Baldwin Girls School in Bangalore, India, she worked in Journalism, and revolutionized the library system. She assumed the duties of Acting Principal, frequently counseling troubled souls, and lifting their spirits. She enjoyed leading or participating in Bible studies.

Although counseling and reading were favorite activities, Marynell was always ready for an adventure. Her stories and anecdotes entertained friends and family. She enjoyed traveling and was able to spend time in the Holy Land, England, France, Greece, Italy, The Vatican, India, Sikkim, Thailand, and Japan.  If not traveling or with family she could be found at the theater, the symphony, church or shopping.  Even in her 90’s she organized and coordinated the Vespers Service at Friendship Manor, occasionally delivering the sermon.  She was talented in quilting, sewing, doing cross stitch, knitting, making batiks and other crafts.  She had a short stint on TV teaching how to make and decorate candles.

Survived by her son Randall Kirkwood (Eileen) of Fergus Falls, MN; and daughters Kathryn Scott of East Moline, IL;  Karla Kirkwood-Johnson (Greg) of East Moline; and Jane Herr of Munster, IN., 9 grand-children, and 9 great-grandchildren, and 1 great-great grandchild.

She was predeceased by her parents: her ex-husband Roland Kirkwood; sister, Anabel Durland; brother, Birney Durland; grandson, Thomas Kirkwood.

In lieu of flowers, Memorials to Knox College, the Delta Zeta Sorority or Heartland Hospice Care Serving Quad Cities would be appreciated

To send flowers to the family in memory of Marynell (Durland) Kirkwood, please visit our flower store.


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