Marlene Schalon,83, passed away May 6, 2020

The world is a little less bright today after the passing of Marlene Schalon at the age of 83 from Alzheimer’s. Marlene was born June 24, 1936 and died May 6, 2020 at Whitcomb Senior Living Center, St. Joseph, with her loving husband Richard by her side.

Marlene was born to Ebba and Dale Longacre in Elkhart, Indiana as one of nine children and grew up in Fairplain, MI. She married Jay Sterling at a young age and they quickly had three children, Kathie, John and Jennifer. After her first marriage ended Marlene married the love of her life, Richard Schalon, and they spent more than four decades very happily married. Richard’s son, Bill, was welcomed into her heart and home as her own son.

Marlene was an active, loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, community member and a lifelong member of Saron Lutheran Church. She was a devoted member of the extended Longacre family. She will be remembered for her pie and cookie baking skills, large batches of Swedish rye bread from a special family recipe, jarred tomato juice and strawberry jam, and caring for and loving her family with a deep passion.

Marlene will be dearly missed by her husband Richard; daughter Kathie (James) Nadeau, son John Sterling (Monica Moore), daughter Jennifer (Bob) Beccard and stepson Bill (Suzy) Schalon; grandchildren Stacey, Rachael, Marissa, Evan and Melia; great-grandchildren Lauren and Sterling; special niece and nephews in the Ashley family; sisters Sandi Hettig, Diane Ruth and Lauri Mayes and brother Dale Longacre; numerous nieces and nephews and other extended family members and friends. She is predeceased by both parents, sisters Joanne and Shirley and brothers David and Roger.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held at a future date due to restrictions related to Covid-19. Arrangements have been entrusted to Starks & Menchinger Chapel & Cremation Services, 269-556-9450. Cards can be sent to Richard Schalon at 509 Ship St. #202, St. Joseph, MI. Memorial contributions may be made in Marlene’s name to Saron Lutheran Church or to the Benton Harbor Soup Kitchen where Marlene volunteered. Friends wishing to leave a condolence may do so at

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