Marilyn McElwee

Obituary of Marilyn D. McElwee

In honor of Marilyn McElwee. Marilyn passed away peacefully on Monday March 2, 2020 surrounded by her family. Marilyn was born in Rochester on February 17, 1932 to parents Orrin and Nancy (Prior) Doell. She is survived by daughter Lisa Young (son-in-law David Young) and son Daniel McElwee. Grandchildren Tyler Young (fiancé-Tiffany Green), and Emily Young. Marilyn is also survived by sister Janice Kujawa and many nieces and nephews. Marilyn was predeceased by husband William J. McElwee, her parents and her brothers Donald Doell and David Doell. Throughout her life, Marilyn wore many hats. Hats of daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, friend, nurse, golfer, gardener, reader and knitter to name just a few. Her Nurse’s cap: Marilyn started her nursing career at Highland Hospital earing her RN diploma in 1952. She worked as a nurse at the Race Track in Farmington while her kids were little, then spent the next 40 years as an RN in the Intensive Care Unit at Thompson Hospital. She started in the unit when Thompson was on Main Street and helped move patients to the current location on Parrish Street. Marilyn later became nurse manager of the ICU until her retirement in 1994. Marilyn ran the ICU with compassion and integrity. Retirement brought many different “hats” for Marilyn. Some visible and some not so apparent, but always there. Sun Visor: After retirement you could usually find Marilyn on the golf course laughing with her friends while wearing her sun visor and swinging her beloved daisy golf clubs. Baseball Cap: Marilyn loved being outside in her backyard working in her extensive flower gardens and doing lawn work. Creative hat: Marilyn also spent time knitting beautiful sweaters for family and friends. She was also an avid reader. Friend hat: Marilyn cherished the many friendships she made throughout her life. Mom hat: Marilyn's most precious hat was the many hats she combined into one as she juggled all the responsibilities of being the matriarch of her family. Widowed at a young age, with two young children, Marilyn had to do it all and she did so with compassion and strength. She loved and cared for her children unconditionally, no matter what difficulties were sent her way. She put Lisa and Dan through college and helped emotionally with anything needed. She was always there for her family. In her later years, Marilyn enjoyed being with Lisa and her family and spending time taking drives with Dan and visiting family for coffee and cookies. Grandmother hat: The only hat more important to her than her mom hat, was wearing her grandmother hat! As she said many times, she was proud of many things in her life, but nothing beat being a grandmother to Tyler and Emily. Marilyn’s grandmother hat would read #1 advocate and kid spoiler of Tyler and Emily. She gave Tyler and Emily a sense of who they are through her loving guidance, inspiration and unconditional love as well as her sense of humor. As soon as Tyler and Emily understood what a phone was and how to reach Nana on speed dial, they were in constant connection. She dropped everything to come over to play. She was a get -down -on- the- floor grandma who played pirates, dinosaurs and Barbies for hours without complaining. She went on numerous walks to look for rocks, flowers and butterflies. She took care of them when they were sick and cheered for them at sporting events. Sami hat: Marilyn’s last hat was her dog- loving hat which showed the love she had for her companion Sami. Sami and Marilyn were inseparable. You could always find them out walking, playing and gardening and when Marilyn needed assistance and used a walker, Sami sat on the seat leading the way as they continued their journeys together. A Reception celebrating Marilyn’s life will be held at St. John’s Episcopal Church, 183 N. Main St. Canandaigua, NY from 3:30-6:00 on Friday March 13, 2020. In Lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Marilyn’s Memory to Thompson Hospital ICU expansion fund. Donation information can be found at The family wants to extend their gratitude to the compassionate and loving staff at Brookdale Pittsford where Marilyn lived the past year. Despite Marilyn suffering with memory loss issues, Brookdale appreciated her sense of humor and need to continue to be herself and a “nurse” until the end, providing her with a sense of meaning and worth. Please share a memory or condolences online by visiting

Final Resting Place

Woodlawn Cemetery
130 North Pearl St.
Canandaigua, New York, United States
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