Marilyn Frink Jordan George

Posted: Friday, July 16, 2010

Marilyn Frink Jordan George died July 1, 2010 in Lewiston, Idaho. She was 89.

Born April 13, 1921 to Gale and Helen Deardorff Frink, her family lived for many generations in Tipton, Iowa, but moved to Lisbon when Marilyn was five, where she graduated from high school and was a starter on the girls' basketball team. After graduation from Iowa State, she worked at A.E. Staley test kitchen and obtained a patent for the use of oil in cakes.

She met Wilhelm (Skip) Jordan at a church dance for Navy men receiving training at Iowa State. They corresponded while he was stationed at Pearl Harbor. When discharged, he hitchhiked to Iowa and proposed. They married on Feb. 23,1946. Their honeymoon was heading to Wrangell, Alaska by train and steamer. They received a homesite in Wrangell and Skip built a cabin, cutting the lumber with a hand saw. They also bought a salmon troller and learned to fish. Skip and Marilyn had four children that they took fishing every summer.

They moved to Ketchikan, and Marilyn worked in the Pulp Mill Laboratory there. The couple purchased the 42-foot troller "Nohusit" in 1952 and lived in Southeast Alaska for 49 years.

They also started a charter fishing business and took photographs and movies of Southeast Alaska, which were shown at the Chicago Boat and Travel show and Seattle's KOMO Exploration program in 1964.

Skip died from leukemia in 1965. Marilyn and their four children moved to Eugene, Ore. After obtaining her Master's degree, she worked as a Home Extension Agent in Idaho. In 1977, she moved back to Petersburg for a writer's job with the Forest Service.

She married Bill George in 1978 and returned to fishing aboard their new custom designed boat "I Gotta." After retiring and selling the boat to her son, Eric, who continues the family tradition, she published her life story "Following The Alaskan Dream" in 1999. She enjoyed traveling and promoting her book and encouraging others to write their life stories. The Fisher Poet gathering in Astoria, Ore., was a favorite annual trip.

In 2006, when Bill George became ill, she went with him to Idaho for medical treatment. Shortly before their planned trip home to Petersburg, Marilyn suffered a severe stroke. Bill died in 2007 at age 92. Marilyn's youngest daughter, Lynda Troka, died of breast and bone cancer in 2008. Marilyn was able to attend a large Frink family reunion in 2009.

She is survived by her son Eric Jordan and wife, Sarah; daughters Karen (Frank) Glass and Barbara (Jack) Leachman; son-in-law Ben Troka; sisters Peggy Frink Humphreys and Helen (Gary) Strine; brother Richard (Charlotte) Frink; eight grandchildren and three great grandchildren

A memorial will be held at the Presbyterian Church in Petersburg at 2 p.m. on Aug. &. Memorials may be sent to: Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 712, Petersburg, AK 99833.

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