A retired nurse who took care of Juneau’s elderly for more than two decades was honored in a ceremony held earlier this month in the Alaska State Capitol for her service and the loving manner in which she provided it.
Marlyn Cuanzon received a legislative citation from Sen. Dennis Egan and Rep. Cathy Muñoz, surrounded by family and friends in an event held in the Capitol’s historic Speaker’s Chambers.
In 1988, Marlyn began working at the Juneau Pioneer’s Home where she enjoyed caring for the elderly. In 1991, she took a job at St. Ann’s Care Center, now known as Wildflower Court, where she served as a medication nurse, helped train new staff and generally met the needs of the residents.
Whether it was taking time with a lonely elder or seeing to seniors’ cleanliness, Marlyn approached her job with a calm, quiet, humble and unassuming demeanor that made her a loved and respected member of residents and staff.
“Marlyn’s unconditional love for the residents of Wildflower Court is unparalleled,” Muñoz said. “Many are grateful for all that she has done to ease the pain of others and for her many years of service.”
Marlyn was born in the Philippines. After graduating from nursing school, she served as a community health nurse and partnered with a rural midwife and sanitation inspector to provide free delivery of babies and help to indigent mothers. She also administered immunizations to school children throughout the region.
In 1977, she moved to Kuwait where she worked at two hospitals. She returned to the Philippines in 1983 where she married her high school sweetheart, Manuel Cuanzon. Four years later, they moved to the United States and have called Alaska home for 25 years.