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Awarded for service to the Community
Entered on roll: 2005
Marion Vincent grew up in Wynyard and Waratah, on Tasmania’s North-West Coast. She missed a lot of school, as she was often required to look after her five younger siblings while her parents were working and later because she was helping in their bakery at Waratah. She always remembered a next door neighbour who had kept a live Tasmanian Tiger in his backyard.
Marion married in 1927 and had three children, two sons and a daughter. In 1929, Marion and her husband purchased a funeral business in Burnie. After her husband died suddenly in 1948, Marion made the difficult decision to continue running the business with her 19 year-old-son, despite having two younger children and a substantial business debt. At this time, there were very few women in the funeral business. Marion was a pioneer, providing inspiration to other women, encouraging professional development and participation in industry associations. Marion succeeded in her goal of continuing the firm until her sons were able to take over completely. She developed a strong customer base and was widely respected for her sensitivity and care in assisting bereaved families.
Marion was a foundation member of Soroptimist International of Burnie and maintained her involvement for more than 50 years. She was a Past President of the Burnie group and a Life Member. Marion was a member of the Burnie Bowls Club for 40 years and also a Life Member, Patron and former President. She was also involved with the Probus Club of Burnie, Red Cross and the Spencer Hospital Fundraising Committee.
Marion died in June 2004, just one month after celebrating her 100th birthday. March 2004 marked the 75th anniversary of the Vincent family’s ownership of its funeral business. Marion was always immensely proud that the firm had produced three National Presidents of the Australian Funeral Directors Association.