Marie Eleanor Parrish

Marie Eleanor (Wilson) Parrish, 76, passed away peacefully March 25, 2015, at her home in West Chester, Pa. 

Marie was born Feb. 9, 1939, in Greenport, to the the late George and Beryl (Atwell) Wilson. Marie was predeceased by her husband, Edward A. Parrish

Marie Parrish
Marie Parrish

of Mattituck, in February 1986.

Marie was a 1959 graduate of Greenport High School, where she was the first cheerleader of African-American descent. She received a scholarship to attend Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, to pursue a degree in millinery. Instead of matriculating to FIT, Marie married her high school sweetheart, Edward, and followed him to Rider University in New Jersey.

Marie worked in the library at Rider University while Edward attended college. Upon Edward’s graduation, Marie and her family moved to Queens and then to Huntington where Marie was a homemaker. In 1976 Marie and her family moved to the Marchwood neighborhood of Exton, Pa.

During her years in Exton she worked as an administrative assistant for several organizations, including Great Valley School District, West Chester Area School District, and Unisys. In 1985, Marie and Edward moved to Sterling, Va., until Edward’s untimely passing, when Marie moved back to the West Chester area. Marie finished her working career at Pfizer Pharmaceuticals Animal Health division working as an executive assistant.

Marie enjoyed traveling, especially to the Caribbean Islands. Aruba was her favorite island destination. Marie also loved a party and she loved to dance. She knew many line dances and wasn’t afraid to show you her moves! Marie had a flair for fashion and she always dressed to the nines. She was known for her accessories and colossal shoe and matching purse collection. Marie served on the Exton Square Mall fashion board in the 1980s. Her fashion sense was present right up to the end of her life.

Marie is survived by her three sons, Brian Parrish of New Mexico, Steven Parrish (Kenneth Akers) of Baltimore, Md., and Heath Parrish (Chip Harvey) of Malvern, Pa. She is also survived by one granddaughter, Melissa Parrish of Albuquerque, N.M., who was the love of her life. Additionally, she is survived by two brothers, George Wilson Jr. of Rahway, N.J., and Lionel Wilson of Greenport; several nieces, nephews and cousins; and her first cousin Jeannie Baynes of Las Vegas, Nev., who was like a sister to Marie.

In addition to her parents and husband, Marie was predeceased by her beloved dog, Brutus, who was her loyal companion during the last 13 years of her life.

In celebration of Marie’s life, services will be held Saturday, April 11, at Unity Baptist Church in Mattituck. The family will receive visitors beginning at 10:30 a.m. at the church followed by the funeral service at 11 a.m. Interment will follow at Cutchogue Cemetery.

Memorial contributions can be sent in Marie’s name to American Cancer Society or Alzheimer’s Foundation of America.

Arrangements were entrusted to DeFriest-Grattan Funeral Homes.

This is a paid notice.