Died on October 8, 2012 at Kootenai Medical Center in Coeur d’Alene. She was born on September 16, 1941 in Wilbur, WA to John McKay, Jr. and Bernetta (Reinbold) McKay. She graduated from Wilbur High School in 1959.
Marilyn made her home on a working ranch in the stateline area of Post Falls for many years, where she raised her four children. She worked at Jacklin Seed Company as the office manager for 25 years. At the time of her death Marilyn was General Manager of the Riverbend Inn.
While at Jacklin Seed Company she served on a variety of agricultural boards and commissions including the Washington/North Idaho Seed Association. She was the first woman to serve as president of the Idaho/Eastern Oregon Seed Association. In 1996 she was appointed by Governor Phil Batt to the Idaho Department of Agriculture’s Seed Advisory Council.
A trailblazer, Marilyn was also the first woman to seek the office of Kootenai County Commissioner in the 1970s. She was a graduate of the inaugural Leadership Coeur d’Alene class in 1985 and a member of the Post Falls Chamber of Commerce, serving a term as chairman of the board of directors. She was a member of the Legislative Committees of both the Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene Chambers of Commerce. Marilyn also served on the boards of the Kootenai County Convention, Visitors Bureau and the North Idaho Chamber of Commerce, where she represented Kootenai County and served as president. She led the North Idaho Legislative Tours through the NICC.
Marilyn was named Post Falls Citizen of the Year in 1998 and also received the Mayor’s Community Service Award.
She married Ralph Deutsch in 1980 and they enjoyed ranch life and traveling. A trip to Egypt in recent years where she rode a camel was a high point.
Marilyn was preceded in death by her parents, her oldest brother, Bill and in 1997 by grandson, Alex Gerber. She is survived by her husband, Ralph at the family home, siblings Pat McKay, Alan McKay, Margaret McKay Clogston, and Gordon McKay and by her children, Yancy Eldredge (Erin) of CO, Brett Eldredge (Janet) of Post Falls, Bart Eldredge of Seattle and Marlo Eldredge Gerber (Mike) of Post Falls; grandchildren Austin Gerber, Nicholas, Olivia, Tanner and Chase Eldredge.
Public memorial service is Saturday, October 13 at 2 p.m. at Real Life Ministries, 1866 Cecil Road in Post Falls. Private interment will follow at Evergreen Cemetery in Post Falls. Arrangements are through ENGLISH FUNERAL CHAPEL in POST FALLS.
Visit Marilyn’s online memorial at www.englishfuneralchapel.com
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