Remembering Marion Curtis.

Marion Curtis was a tireless advocate for people with serious mental illness, particularly those who were homeless and incarcerated. I just learned of her death, which occurred in February. Below is her official obituary. 

Avalon Housing, in my old hometown of Ann Arbor, is a worthy organization to support in her honor – they have provided affordable, supported housing for both my big brother and Marion’s son, as well as many others. 

Arbor Hospice is also a worthy organization: they took a dying man I worked with out of jail and gave him and his family acceptance, peace, and comfort in the first safe place he slept in for years; sadly it came only in the last week of his life. Without Arbor Hospice, however, he may well have died behind bars for non-payment of fines for the crimes associated with being poor and homeless.

Both Avalon and Arbor Hospice have embraced ex-felons and other formerly incarcerated people as members of our communities, without prejudice. Caring citizens like Marion Curtis helped lay a lot of the foundation of public education that makes that possible today.

Peggy Plews, Prison Abolitionist


Marion Margaret Curtis

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Curtis, Marion Margaret (Johnson) Ann Arbor, MI

Marion Margaret (Johnson) Curtis, of Ann Arbor, MI, 77, passed away peacefully at home on February 27 after a long illness. She was born in Brantford Ontario, Canada in 1932 to Frederick and Jane Johnson. After the family moved to Montreal, Quebec, she attended Montreal public schools and earned a Bachelors Degree from McGill University in Montreal and a Masters Degree from Smith College School of Social Work in Northampton, MA. 
After marriage in 1955 she lived in Cincinnati, OH, Montreal, Quebec, Philadelphia, PA, and Ann Arbor. She was active in multiple sports and in the Webster United Church of Christ in Dexter, MI, where her activities included singing in the choir and playing several characters in the church’s production of “Spoon River Anthology”. She loved flowers, gardening, her family and her numerous friends. 
She is survived by her husband of 55 years George Curtis, M.D., of Ann Arbor, sons Jeff Curtis of Vernon, British Columbia, Canada, Andrew Curtis of Ann Arbor, and Brian Curtis of Ketchikan, AK; by her sister Dorothy Govan of Niagara Falls, Ontario: by nieces Jane Govan Plotnick of Montreal, Quebec and Nancy Govan Aubin of Ste. Catherine’s, Ontario; nephews Donald Govan, Jr. of Ste. Catherine’s and David Govan of Niagara Falls, Ontario; by daughter-in-law, Brenda Miskimmin and granddaughter, Kate Curtis, of Vernon, British Columbia. 
A memorial service was held March 8, 2010 at Webster United Church of Christ, Dexter, MI. Memorial donations may be made to Avalon Housing (1327 Jones Drive, Suite 102, Ann Arbor, MI, 48105) or Arbor Hospice (2366 Oak Valley Drive, Ann Arbor, MI, 48103). Arrangements by Generations.