MWI mourn passing of lifelong member Marion Fulton

Marion Fulton was passionate about the Manitoba Women’s Institute and its work on behalf of rural Manitobans

Marion Fulton_Submitte_opt.jpegShe was determined to improve the lives of rural women and their families, and she focused her entire life volunteering with an organization she believed could do that.

Marion Fulton of Birtle was a longtime member of the Manitoba Women’s Institute. Her passing, at the age of 92 on Nov. 4, is being mourned by fellow members who say she was an extraordinary friend, leader and mentor.

Active with her hometown chapter, Fulton also served as the institute’s president from 1965 to 1967, and later in the same role with the national Federated Women’s Institute of Canada.

She’ll be remembered for her strong leadership, honest and forthright manner, and unwavering belief what the institute could do for rural Manitoba, says current president Joan Clement of Russell.

“She remained totally impassioned about the ability of the WI to serve rural women and she kept that passion to the very end,” said Clement.

Originally from Yorkshire, England, Fulton trained and worked as a registered nurse before marrying her Canadian husband, Victor Fulton, then an RCAF flight lieutenant, in 1943. She left England with their infant son, born in 1944, and was among thousands of English war brides who arrived at Halifax’s famous Pier 21. She then headed west by rail to await Victor’s return from the war. They farmed and raised three sons at Birtle.

Fulton also worked as a nurse at the Birtle hospital and was a dedicated community volunteer, serving as a Brownie leader and Sunday school teacher. She joined WI soon after her arrival and was continuously involved in her local chapter. Her provincial and national involvement also led to becoming vice-president of the international Associated Country Women of the World, a post that required extensive travel and allowed her to make friends around the world.

Fulton was made a member of the Order of Canada in 1978, and in 1988 was also inducted into the Manitoba Agricultural Hall of Fame.

Predeceased by her husband, Fulton is remembered by her three sons and their wives, 12 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren — an obituary notes the latter “simply called her ‘Great’” — as well as extended family.

The Manitoba Women’s Institute’s Forever Fund, which helps pay for programs that benefit all rural Manitobans, is accepting donations in Fulton’s memory. To donate, please contact MWI, 1129 Queens Avenue, Brandon, Man., R7A 1L9  or go to www.mbwi.org/donate.

About the author

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Lorraine Stevenson

Lorraine Stevenson is a reporter and photographer for the Manitoba Co-operator with 25 years experience writing news and features. She was previously a reporter with the Farmers Independent Weekly and has also written for community newspapers in Winnipeg and Manitoba's Interlake.

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