Margaret Sybil Morison Schwarze died on September 21, 2019, after a long and fulfilling life. She was born in Salt Lake City on August 23, 1925, to Emma (Condie) and Robert Morison and grew up in Riverside, California, with her three sisters, Marion, Patricia, and Suzanne. From an early age, Margaret exhibited the strength of character that served her so well throughout her life. She worked at various jobs—including two memorable summers working at Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks—from age 14 until she was almost 70. She put herself through college, attending UC Berkeley and graduating with a major in English and a teaching credential. While at Cal, she met a handsome young WWII veteran, Ralph W. Schwarze, whom she married in 1949. In 1957 Margaret and Ralph moved into the house that Ralph designed and built in Los Altos Hills, where, among the apricot trees, they raised their three daughters. Education, music, theater, and travel were among her lifelong interests. Margaret taught elementary school in the Bay Area for almost forty years, more than thirty of those in the Mountain View-Whisman School District.
She loved her work educating children, including her own. Although she did not have professional training as a musician, she had a lovely soprano voice and sang in many area choruses and choirs, including early years in the West Bay Opera Chorus. She had a phenomenal capacity for remembering the music and lyrics to almost any song she heard. An avid theater-goer, she was an early season subscriber to A.C.T., Bus Barn/Los Altos Stage, and TheatreWorks productions. Always eager to explore beyond home, she traveled extensively in Europe and North America. In retirement, she volunteered at the Los Altos History Museum and Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts and continued to sing in church and community choirs. A lifelong exerciser, she enjoyed the community of friends she made at Lydia’s/The Spa. Margaret was predeceased by her parents, her sisters, and her husband. She is survived by her daughters Penny (David), Judy (Tom), and Mary. In accordance with Margaret’s wishes, a private gathering will be held at a later date. If you feel motivated to do something in her memory, consider making music, attending concerts and plays, and supporting education.