Marietta Magdalene Dajc Bourjaily, age 97, passed away peacefully with family at her side on March 7, 2018 while a resident at the Lynn Care Center in Front Royal VA where she had resided for the past three years.
Marietta was born on January 2, 1921 in Vienna Austria. Her family moved from Europe to England during the trying times of the Holocaust and Hitler’s regime while she was a young woman, where she attended school. Her family then immigrated to the United States via entry at Ellis Island in the late 1930s. Once in the States, she attended Maryland College for Women earning a degree in Bachelor of Arts on June 7, 1943, this is also where she met her beloved future husband, Monte Ferris Bourjaily Jr. whom she married on February 14, 1942. Marietta became a naturalized citizen on November 8, 1944 in New York.
While raising a family of 6 children, Monte III (Terry), Alfred (Brian), Neil, Melanie, Gavin and Gwyneth (Gwyn), Marietta worked as a political reporter with various radio and television stations including WCAX in Vermont, WFIL in Philadelphia Pennsylvania, WLW in Cincinnati Ohio, as well as several other stations in the New York, Pennsylvania, Kentucky and West Virginia areas. She was one of the first female political reporters to work on Capitol Hill in the early 1950’s. Her journalism reporting career started with the covering of the end of President Truman’s term in office and continued through the Presidencies of Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon and into the beginning of President Gerald R. Ford’s term of office.
Marietta, under the name of Marietta Dake, covered numerous stories during the time she was reporting to include The McCarthy hearings in 1954 to the time the capitol had been the scene of a bombing in early 1970, the assassination of President Kennedy 1963, to the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party shooting in 1954, which she witnessed firsthand, and even the Watergate scandal in the early 1970s along with many other events.
She retired from reporting in the mid 1970’s and eventually relocated from The Washington Metropolitan area to Waterlick VA, where she and her husband continued involvement in the newspaper business, publishing articles under the name of Globe Syndicate. She also was known for her breeding of Labrador Retrievers and horse boarding. In her later years, she was always seen with a book in her hands while enjoying the sunshine on her front porch of the farm house.
Marietta was predeceased by her parents, her sister in Sweden, her beloved husband of 63 years Monte Ferris Bourjaily Jr, her eldest son Monte Ferris Bourjaily III and her youngest great grandson.
Marietta is survived by Margaret Lynne Bourjaily (Monte III deceased) of Alexandria, VA, Alfred Brian Bourjaily (Barbara) of Saint Petersburg, Florida, Neil Alan Bourjaily (Marti) Durango, Colorado, Melanie Bourjaily Kelly (William deceased) of Littlestown, Pennsylvania, Gavin Dake Bourjaily (Marty) of Waterlick, VA and Gwyneth Bourjaily Lema (Jack) of Talent, Oregon, along with 14 wonderful grandchildren, 3 lovely step grandchildren and 14 beautiful great grandchildren.
The family would also like to thank the doctors, nurses, CNAs and the rest of the wonderful staff at Lynn Care Center for the care, compassion and treatment of Marietta during her stay there.
There will be a family gathering and visitation on Saturday March 17, 2018 from 10:00 am until 11:00am at Saint John’s The Baptist Roman Catholic Church in Front Royal, VA. Immediately following at 11:00 am there will be a Gregorian Requiem Mass of Christian Burial at the church. After the services there will be a private interment at the family farm.
In lieu of flowers Marietta would prefer a donation be made in her name to: Samuels Public Library – 330 E Criser Rd, Front Royal, VA 22630, American Cancer Society or American Heart Association.