Marie Louise Morrison

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February 1, 1929 ~ July 10, 2018

Marie Louise Davies Morrison passed July 10, 2018 at 8:30 a.m. in her Vancouver, Washington home surrounded by her family after suffering with progressive dementia for the final seven years of her life. She lived to be 89 years and five months old, dying the day after her late husband's 94th birthday.
Marie Louise Davies was born February 1, 1929 in Ponchatoula, Louisiana to Ursula Albena Parker and Morgan Rodolph Davies. In her teens, Marie worked for her father's strawberry farm and lunch counter restaurant, called Morgan's Place, featuring Ursula Davies' Coney Island hotdogs. Marie was popular in school and was often mistaken to be a twin with her brother, Morgan Rudolph Davies, who was just 14 months her senior. Marie and Morgan were known as "the Davies twins" as Morgan held himself back in the first grade so he could go through school with his beloved sister. Marie played sports in high school and was center guard on the girls' basketball at Ponchatoula high school, where she graduated in 1946.
Marie suffered severe burns as a three year old, and contracted diphtheria at eight, and was healed by her mother and herbalist grandmother, Albena Coralie Parker. Through her extensive recoveries, Marie recognized her calling as a healer. She studied to become a registered nurse at Charity Hospital School of Nursing in New Orleans. As a senior student leading a group of Tulane Medical students on their rounds, she met her future husband, Donald Taylor Morrison. After Marie rejected the advances of several young medical students, they dared Donald to ask her out. Much to everyone's surprise, she accepted Donald's invitation to accompany him to a local dance. They were married November 24th, 1949 in Ponchatoula, Louisiana. While Don was completing his medical degree, they lived on Magazine Street and Marie worked at the Veteran's Hospital in New Orleans.
In June of 1950, the newlywed couple moved to Portland, Oregon when Donald accepted a residency at Providence Hospital. She completed a Bachelor of Science Degree from Portland State University (PSU) in Nursing. Marie worked in hospitals and doctors' offices in pediatrics and served for many years as a nurse for orthopedic surgery. In 1966, Marie and her younger sister, Leslie Lauderback (neé Davies), returned to Ponchatoula to provide end-of-life care to their mother. This experience inspired her to pursue graduate studies in death and dying at OHSU. In the 1970s, she studied geriatrics at PSU and became a certified geriatric Nurse Practitioner. She opened a clinic at the Van Vista Plaza for geriatric care.
Marie saw a need for death and dying services, where there were none. In 1978, she founded Hospice of Clark County with her husband, Don. It was the first and only clinic to provide end-of-life services in the region, paving the way for the hospice services we see today. She directed Hospice of Clark County for ten years from 1978-1988.
In addition to her medical studies, Marie studied horticulture and landscaping, becoming a master gardener and state flower show judge. She was active in Garden Club, organized a thirty-year Bridge Club, was President of the Medical Auxiliary, and was President of the Women's Society at First Presbyterian Church where she also served as a Deacon and Stephen Minister.
In Felida, the family raised horses, ponies, peacocks, cows, Scottish Terriers, goats, and chickens. Upon retiring, she developed an interest in genealogy, which led her on a pilgrimage to find her Davies ancestors from Carmarthenshire, Wales. She hosted grand dinner parties, arranged flowers for community events, and cared for her two granddaughters. Marie was famous for her exquisite southern Cajun cooking (particularly her Dungeness Crab Gumbo and stellar pralines) and dynamic and colorful flower arrangements.
Marie is survived by her younger sister, Leslie (Davies) Lauderback; her children: Elizabeth Gaile "Lara" Morrison, Donald Allen Morrison (wife Suzan), Robert Bruce Morrison (wife Su), Jeanne Marie Morrison Galarneau and Susan Robert Wolf (husband John); and her granddaughters, Genevieve Louise Galarneau and Nicole Renee Galarneau.
A memorial will be held at the First Presbyterian Church, 4300 Main St., Vancouver, starting at noon on Sunday, August 12, 2018. Followed by reception.
Please sign her guest book at:
Religious Service Information
First Presbyterian Church
4300 Main St
Vancouver, WA 98663
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Published in The Columbian on July 29, 2018
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