Publisher’s notebook: Remembering Marianna |

Publisher’s notebook: Remembering Marianna

Bryce Jacobson

Editor's note: Bryce Jacobson's regular Business Beat column will return next week.

Today, we celebrate the life of a great woman.

As many of you know, a memorial service for Marianna Raftopoulos, a woman who contributed to our community in countless ways, will be at 11 a.m. today at St. John's Greek Orthodox Church. Overflow will be handled at various locations throughout Craig.

I didn't know Marianna as well as many others did, but I have to say that she was a wonderful, caring, community- and family-minded woman, and a great mentor to me.

I always will remember the thought-provoking conversations and kindness she showed me since my arrival in Craig.

I served with Marianna on the Boys & Girls Club of Craig board, and I watched as she always brought common sense to discussions.

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I also had the privilege of serving with her on the Craig Daily Press' Editorial Board for a period of time. While on the board, no matter how intense the discussion, she always remained calm and spoke her opinion, whether it was popular or not.

I also had the privilege of having her daughter, Mari Katherine, be an intern and columnist for the newspaper. I think you can tell a lot about people by getting to know their children, and if that is indeed true, it's obvious Marianna was a kind, compassionate and generous person, as evidenced by MK.

Many people make a difference in our lives on a daily basis, but few and far between are people who make an impact on my life like Marianna did.

She would call me back after a meeting during which she and I disagreed just to tell me that she knew I was a little upset, and my ability to remain calm would simply come with time. Her voice on matters such as these was indeed a calming influence.

On the lighter side, I never will forget how every time she was late for a meeting, which, by the way, was often, she would walk in with a smile on her face and apologize while explaining what delayed her. I can't count the times that her tardiness was because of some activity involving her children, perhaps the only excusable reason a person can have for being late.

She also adored my children, not because they were my children, but because they were simply children. I think she believed every child deserved adoration, a notion that again speaks to her kindness.

My thoughts and prayers are with the Raftopoulos family today as they celebrate and remember the life of their beloved Marianna.

Farewell, Marianna. I hope you knew how grateful we all were to have known you, and how much better our community is for you having been a part.

Here's to remembering all absent friends, as today I and many others remember one of ours.

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