Erickson-Menton, Margaret

On January 26, 2024, the world dimmed as one of its brightest lights, Margaret Jane Erickson-Menton of Newark, DE was called home by the Lord. Born November 21st to Jane and Jim Erickson, the oldest of 5 siblings, Margaret was a natural born leader; motivated to do anything her mind was set to and doling out advice and giving her opinion as necessary (and it was always necessary). She was often described as being ‘larger than life’ and she lived up to the reputation through boisterous and educational conversations, an infectious laugh, and a glittering sense of style.

Delaware was the only home Margaret ever knew, however, she left it every chance she could. Margaret loved to travel and had an insatiable drive to learn and experience as much as she could. Over the years, she visited family and friends around the country, including the annual family vacation to Emerald Isle, NC. Among many trips to Europe, she took her daughter to Paris (and despite vowing never to return- visited again with her husband several years later), went on a pilgrimage to Rome, and saw Van Morrison with her cousins, brother, sister-in-law, and husband in her ancestral home country of Ireland.

A devoted servant to her church, Margaret was a loyal parishioner to the Cathedral of St. Peter for over forty years. She was a long-time lector and unofficial member of the choir, her clear soprano voice could be heard by all during Sunday morning services. Margaret was also the de-facto holiday decorator, commanding her children and cajoling her siblings, nieces, nephews, and friends into cleaning and decorating the Cathedral for every Easter and Christmas season.

In the art room of the Cathedral, ‘Ms. Maggie’ held after-school troop meetings as the volunteer leader of Daisy, Brownie, Junior, Cadette, and Senior Troops of the Girl Scouts of America for over 25 years. She devoted her time to teaching the young women of St. Peter’s Cathedral School (the same school her children attended) essential skills, such as door to door sales and ‘cold call conversations,’ selling Girl Scout cookies on Market Street, St. Joe’s on the Brandywine, and other high traffic locations in Wilmington. Her cookie sales and other donation drives helped fund trips for her scouts; to the birthplace of Juliette Gordon Low in Savannah, GA and to the international scout Jamboree in Derbyshire, England. Margaret’s dedication to these young women opened their horizons, giving them lifelong experiences within, and far beyond, their communities in Delaware.

Margaret attended St. Mark’s High School, same as her siblings and eventually, her daughters. She received and accepted a full tuition merit scholarship to Immaculata University, where she graduated with a double major in Biology and Psychology. Margaret started adulthood as a volunteer teacher, a radio correspondent, then built a career in banking, created several jobs as a small business owner in Newark, before finishing her working years in retail.

No one had a greener thumb than Margaret. She poured herself into her garden and learned all she could about plants. Having parties in the warmer months she would often give tours of her garden to share what she was able to grow in her little slice of Eden. When the leaves changed, full sized Halloween candy bars could be found in the house with the purple front door (Mom’s favorite color). In the winter, it would become a “Dr. Seuss style” light display for Christmas, her favorite holiday. Inside, her home was resplendent with plants, and coming into her house at this time was like stepping into a Christmas village, complete with the whole town of Bethlehem.

Family was paramount to Margaret’s life and she spent the vast majority of her time with the love of her life and husband of forty years, Dennis James Menton. He was the foundation of her joy, her rock, and full time caregiver in her final years. Together they raised four children: Gwendolyn Blanche, Dennis Edward, Clara Antoinette, and John Oliver - middle names were used when force was necessary. Over the years, all of Margaret’s children married and their marriages to Kyle, Tess, Taylor and Laurin have so far blessed her with six grandchildren: James, Evelyn, Noelle, Maria, Sylvia, and Dennis. Margaret’s five siblings Mary, Jim, Clare, and Katie raised their children with the same values and care, resulting in a strong and loving Irish-Catholic family.

Viewing: 5-7pm Thurs, February 1, McCrery & Harra Funeral Homes, 3710 Kirkwood Hwy, Wilmington, DE. Funeral Mass: 9am, February 2, Cathedral of St. Peter, 500 N West St, Wilmington, DE. Burial: All Saints Cemetery. Funeral attire: Please not ‘all black’ attire, Margaret loved bright colors.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to: St. Peter’s Cathedral School, 310 West 6th St, Wilmington, DE.

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by 2fish