Maren Heisel Larsen, much loved and respected educator and guidance counselor at Riverside High School, Painesville, Ohio, died Nov. 23, 2012, in Hagerstown, Md., at the age of 96.
Born in Norway in 1916, she came to the United States as a young woman, where she received her undergraduate education at Roberts Wesleyan College, Rochester, N.Y.; and her master's degree from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio.
During her distinguished career at Riverside from 1955 to 1998, she also acted as a sponsor and coordinator for the American Field Service International Youth Exchange Program, supporting numerous young students in their education and intercultural awareness. She also personally supported orphans around the world for more than 20 years, through World Vision, Inc.
As a longtime advocate of environmental preservation, she was a member of the Holden Arboretum, Willoughby, Ohio, and a significant supporter of their programs. Her contributions were recognized on her 75th birthday, by the presentation of a bench for the arboretum, from her friends and family.
Predeceased by parents and all nine of her siblings, she is survived by many nieces and nephews in North Dakota and Norway; close friends, including "extended family" from the eastern United States; and her longtime friend, Alice Boyce of Hagerstown.
A celebration of life will be conducted at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, 2012, at Rest Haven Funeral Chapel, 1601 Pennsylvania Ave., Hagerstown, with the Rev. Nancy Jenkins officiating.
Interment will follow at Rest Haven Cemetery.
Memorial contributions in her memory may be made to World Vision, Inc. (www.worldvision.org); or to the Holden Arboretum, 9500 Sperry Road, Willoughby, Ohio 44094.