Sikorski - (Obit Leader)
Sikorski - (Obit Leader)

In Memory of Vivian Terhark Marx

December 26, 1947 - October 27, 2017

December 26, 1947 - October 27, 2017

Vivian Terhark Marx, age 69, a resident of Spooner, died at her home on Friday, October 27, 2017, with family at her side.  

Vivian Evelyn Rablin was born to LeRoy and Gertrude Rablin on December 26, 1947 in Cook Minnesota.   Vivian grew up in Buyck, Minnesota, which is nestled in the northern portion of the state not far from the Canadian border.  As might be imagined, the winters were harsh.  Schools were only closed when it was 40 below zero or colder.  Summers were treasured and generally included fishing and picking blueberries.  Fall was beautiful and her memories included time to hunt partridge with a .22 as opposed to a shotgun.  

Vivian attended school in Buyck and Orr before moving to Park Rapids, Minnesota to finish high school.  Vivian married Duane Allen Terhark of Park Rapids in 1965.  

Vivian began her career at Fabritek as an Executive Secretary in Engineering before entering the revolutionary industry of computers in 1967.  As a woman in the industry, she was a pioneer at Control Data working as process control clerk, computer operator and programmer.  She wrote code in several languages including Cobol, Fortran and Compass.  She assisted in writing compilers and DOS operating systems.

Using those experiences as a springboard, in the mid-1970s Vivian moved to Dayton Hudson Corporation in Minneapolis as a Project Manager for online purchase order management system.  She assisted in the design and coding of Christmas gift computer system.  

In the mid-1980s, Vivian was offered a role at McQuay Perfex (later purchased by Best Buy company) as a Point of Sale Systems Manager, where she designed, coded and installed online inventory control systems for 160 stores nationwide.  Her efforts were recognized as saving over $1M.  For her efforts, she was awarded an all-expense paid trip to China, highlights of which included lunch atop of the Great Wall.  She was named “Minnesota Woman of the Year” by the corporation in 1981. From there, her career took her to Omaha, Nebraska for Richmond Gordman as a Systems Manager, where she worked for two years.  Yet family called her to Spooner, Wisconsin in 1984.  

She purchased Montgomery Wards in Spooner, yet the business took an unexpected turn when Montgomery Wards closed small, catalog based retail establishments in 1985.  Ever the entrepreneur, Vivian started an independent appliance business (Arrow Associated Store) in downtown Spooner, which she owned and operated until she retired in 2016.  

Vivian's hobbies included a prolific garden and a home canning operation that was nearly legendary.  It was not unusual for the garden to produce copious amounts of vegetables and fruit annually which was generously shared with family and friends. During her spare time, Vivian could be found working tirelessly and late nights to complete the canning processes. Vivian loved to cook and became fascinated with nutrition, organic gardening and garden-to-table far long before it was in popular culture.  Although she always found time to go fishing, her dedication to her garden left little time to other hobbies during the summer and fall months.  During winters, Vivian was a member of the Spooner and Webster Bowling Leagues for 30 years.  Vivian loved to play card games, go ice fishing and she treasured her time with family.

Vivian married William “Bill” Thomas Marx on January 15, 1983.  Together they raised their blended family which included Julie (Terhark) Elginer, Miranda (Marx) Theisen and Hollie Marx.  Their life together was filled with love of life, family, friends, hard work, devotion to each other and two great dogs, Duke and Windsy.  They enjoyed a special partnership doing things together to make their life and those around them enjoyable and productive.  Their life did face numerous challenges through 35 years, but Viv's positive attitude, smile and Bill's ability to make her laugh made it a great life.

She is survived by William “Bill”, daughters Julie (John), Miranda (Al) and Hollie.  Brothers Les (Colleen) Rablin and Wayne (Debra) Rablin, sister Patti Sokoloski, Brother-in-law Harold (Nates) Marx, Sister-in-law LaVonne (Bob) Madsen, 5 grandchildren Jack and James Elginer, Grace Marx, Michael and Ruth Theisen and dozens of nieces and nephews.  

She is preceded in death by her parents LeRoy and Gertrude Rablin and ten brothers and sisters. 

Funeral services for Vivian will be held on Tuesday, October 31, 2017, at 11 am, at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Spooner with visitation at the church on Tuesday from 9:30 until 11.  Interment with a graveside service will be held on Wednesday, November 1, 2017, at 2pm, at the Forest Home Cemetery in Buyck, MN.  

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Spooner Fire District.

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