Marcia Orton

Fraternalist of the year

OVERVIEW

Marcia Orton, member of Branch 1425, Ford City, PA, has been named LCBA’s 2016 Fraternalist of the Year!

Several years ago Marcia was diagnosed with cancer and has been fiercely battling her disease while continuing to serve as a trustee for our branch. Even though she has been wheelchair bound for the last several years, she has been able to go back to work at her floral shop for a few hours each day. Not letting anything limit her, to our surprise and joy, Marcia managed to attend several meetings this past year. This is no easy task considering the effort and support it takes for her to get to the parish office. When she can’t be there physically, she is often on the phone contributing ideas and ways she can help.


Service to Others

Marcia has been a long time member of the Ford Cliff Fire Department Auxiliary. Having held the offices of treasurer and secretary, she is now the President of the Auxiliary. This particular auxiliary has done so much for their department and the community. As a result, the entire auxiliary was inducted into the Ford City Hall of Fame. She is also a member of the Ford City Hall of Fame Board of Governors and served as the treasurer from 2011-2015. Marcia was a very active member of the Armstrong County Herb Group, but unfortunately the group meets the exact same dates and times as Branch 1425, so she stayed with LCBA.

For over 10 years Marcia was head cheerleading coordinator for the Ford City Area Youth Football where she supervised 25-30 cheerleaders and organized all cheerleader competitions and performances. Most parents, once their children graduate from school, are done with their volunteering duties. The fact that Marcia continued to work with her community’s youth says a lot about her love of the town and her dedication to our kids! She was also instrumental in working with the church to organize its 100th Anniversary.


Innovative Leadership

Marcia has owned and operated her floral shop “Marcia’s Garden” since 2002. Since its opening, she has consistently and continually used her place of business to provide educational and community opportunities, as well as to spread a bit of sunshine to many other organizations serving the Ford City area. Marcia saw a need to provide Head Start children with a variety of learning activities, so this past year, like many years prior, she invited entire Head Start classes between the ages of 3 & 5 to her shop. Here, the children participate in a variety of crafts, lessons about flowers, and story hours – accompanied by treats she provides. These field trips are so rewarding and fulfilling for these children, and the partnership Marcia has formed with Head Start is planning to continue for many years to come.

She is an innovator when it comes to Ford City’s Light Up Night each year. She is on the Light Up Committee and in the past, she had organized a booth to be set up in front of her store where Branch 1425 sold hot dogs, hot chocolate and cookies to raise extra money. She also helped organize the Santa Claus for kids in December at the Ford Cliff Firehall. She has donated gift baskets, gift certificates, flower and centerpieces to many groups in our community.

Being the owner of a flower shop exposes you to the best and worst days of people’s lives and the community has formed a unique intimacy with Marcia because of her excellent care, sympathy and devotion during these times. This bond and caring really showed when Marcia needed a wheelchair accessible bathroom put into her home. Being the modest person she is, initially she kindly refused any help from organizations wanting to have a fundraiser. However the outpouring of community support was so great, that she finally conceded and humbly accepted. It turned out to be one of the biggest fundraisers our town has ever seen. She is truly loved by all!