Murrayville resident Marjorie Mazerall, 94, shows a portrait of herself as a young servicewoman during the Second World War. Today, Mazerall volunteers her time at Penny Pincher thrift store.

Longtime volunteer reflects on war years

Langley’s Marjorie Mazerall, 94, is among the veterans whose portraits are featured on banners hanging in downtown Langley City

“They’re all gone. All of them are gone.”

Murrayville resident Marjorie Mazerall laments her friends and fellow servicewomen who have passed on.

“I’m the only one left,” she said.

In fact, among the servicewomen pictured on the banners hanging along the downtown streets of Langley City in honour of Remembrance Day, Majorie believes she is the only one who still with us.

‘It’s my house’

The 94-year-old has lived in the same small house on 224 Street, just north of Fraser Highway, for the past 54 years.

Life, and landscape, has shifted dramatically over five-and-a-half decades.

“A lot of people have moved,” she said.

“I have new neighbours all over the place. Everybody’s gone but me. They forgot me.”

She and her little dog, Rosie, aren’t planning on changing addresses.

“I like it here,” Marjorie said.

“It’s my house.”

‘We fed the troops’

Marjorie has been a widow for the past 13 years, after the 2003 passing of her husband Richard, a carpenter and former merchant marine who travelled all around the world, from Jamaica to India, to Egypt, and many parts in between.

“He was all over the place,” Marjorie said.

Originally from Nova Scotia, Marjorie was working in a sanitarium (“TB place… I was working there,” she said) when she enlisted in Kinfolk, N.S., and lived in the barracks in Kitchener, Ont.

In Kitchener, she worked in a mess hall.  During own service, Marjorie’s feet never touched foreign soil.

“I didn’t leave Canada,” she said.

“I worked with the cooks. We fed all the troops.”

Longtime volunteer

On Saturday afternoons, Marjorie volunteers at the Penny Pincher thrift store, an activity she has done for the past 25 years.

“I used to go two days and I quit,” she said. “Now, I only go one afternoon.”

The thrift store is run by volunteer members of the Langley Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, with all sales benefiting the local hospital.

“I liked to be there,” she said. “I don’t know. It’s someplace to go, I guess. I like going down there. I work with the jewelry.”

“The girls and the volunteers are nice,” offered her daughter, Brenda. “And as mom’s gotten older, it’s another activity for mom to do on Saturdays.”

“We’ve worked with each other for years,” Marjorie said. “A lot of the old ones are quitting, now.”

Marjorie has three children, including daughter Brenda and sons, Burton and Bruce, along with three grandchildren, and three great grandchildren.

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