ROCK CREEK — Marilyn Kay Forthman, age 81, completed her earthly journey on Thursday, Oct. 10, 2013.
The daughter of LeRoy Charles and Helen Evelyn (Castle) Phelps, she was born on Feb. 6, 1932 in Ashtabula and had remained a lifetime Ashtabula County resident.
On Sept. 17, 1949, she married Richard E. Forthman in Covington, Ky. and they celebrated forty–five years of love and memories before his death in 1994.
Marilyn was a school bus driver with the Grand Valley School District for thirty-one years, and was always recognized by her cowboy hats that she wore daily. Marilyn enjoyed her time driving bus for the special needs children of the district as well as the regular bus routes.
An active and faithful member of Rock Creek Faith Community Church for many years, she taught Sunday school and volunteered wherever she was needed. It was most important to Marilyn for people to know that she received Christ and was baptized in 1961 in the Ashtabula River. Marilyn began her day at 4 a.m. by praying for those for whom she cared and who were in need of prayer. She was a Prayer Warrior for her friends and family. She along with her daughter, Valerie, were also members of Eagleville Bible Church. Marilyn enjoyed the fellowship and friendships she made along the way.
All who knew Marilyn; knew her passion for horses, Arabian Horses in particular. Not only did she breed to establish a palomino Arabian, she trained, showed and enjoyed riding, and parading her favorite stallion, “Rickmar Goldfire". She was a horse show judge and a Palomino Horse Association color judge. She among many others were the founding members of the Dusty Boots Saddle Club. Marilyn also belonged to the NEOAHHA, and the International Arabian Horse Association for many years. She enjoyed teaching 4-H and FFA Clubs about raising horses and the great amount of work needed to produce quality livestock.
Marilyn is survived by her beloved daughter, Valerie Forthman; her sister-in-law, Pat Phelps; nieces and nephews; and her wonderful dog and sidekick, “Bruizer.”
She was preceded in death by her sons, Brian Forthman on July 16, 2013 and Richard LeRoy Forthman on May 30, 1961; her husband, Richard E. Forthman on August 5, 1994; her brother, Jack Phelps; and her parents.
A Celebration of Marilyn’s Life will be held 11 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 19th, at Rock Creek Faith Community Church, 5835 State Route 166, Rock Creek, Ohio 44084, with the Rev. Brian Wright, Pastor officiating. A fellowship dinner will follow the Service.
Marilyn wished this to be a “celebration not a funeral” please wear your finest western wear as you give glory to God for a life well lived.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in Marilyn’s name may be made to her daughter, Valerie, so that she may send them to charities of her choice. ZABACK-WILLIAMS-DUCRO FUNERAL HOME, 500 W. Prospect Road, Ashtabula is in charge of arrangements.
Valerie would like to thank those members from the Eagleville Bible Church and Hospice of the Western Reserve for their compassion and caring of her mom.
Obituary at www.ducro.com and starbeacon.com.