Marilyn Brantley

Category: Obituaries
Created on Thursday, 12 January 2012 07:32
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Marilyn Helen Brantley, known to many for her piano playing and infectious laugh, passed away at the Pioneers Home Sunday at the age of 82.
Born in Juneau Sept. 13, 1929, to Leo and Helen Laurie Jewett, Marilyn lived there until 1960 when she moved to Washington State.
Around that time she began raising and showing Chinese pugs, many of which became and sired champions in dog shows around the country.  She also became a judge and served in that capacity at the Westminster Kennel Club annual event at Madison Square Garden.  After three decades of judging she was granted the honor of Judge Emeritus by the American Kennel Club.
She began playing the piano at an early age and grew up on a Baldwin baby grand piano that her parents brought to Juneau around 1940.  That piano traveled to Washington in 1956 when her parents retired and moved to Oak Harbor and later, after several stops, ended up in the main sitting area of the Pioneers Home in Sitka, where she often  regaled the residents, staff and visitors with her remarkable repertoire of songs, which she played by ear.
Talented at everything she did, she played piano in night clubs and held a variety of jobs during her life including bookkeeper, medical secretary, cocktail waitress, bartender,  alcohol counselor and, as mentioned, dog breeder.  She was once named Washington State employee of the month and employee of the year for the Fircrest Residential Habilitation Center in Seattle.
After a heart attack in 2000, she moved to Juneau for a year and then became a resident of the Sitka Pioneer Home for the last decade of her life.
She grew to love her time at the Home and spent her time reading, watching TV, doing crosswords, and playing bingo, and many card games.  
A month before she passed away, she found peace with God and committed her life to Jesus Christ.  She will be missed but “we will see her again,” her family said.
She is survived by her sons Dick Dapcevich of Sequim, Wash., and Dave Dapcevich, Sitka, and her daughter Dayle Dapcevich of Monroe, Wash.; seven grandchildren; and 12 great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held in the Pioneers Home Chapel 1:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 23.