Marion Cannon Hoppe, 87, died September 18, 2017, of heart failure. She was born in 1930 in San Antonio, TX to LaVon Bennion Cannon and General John K. Cannon, USAF, for whom Cannon AFB in Clovis, NM was named.
Her father and her husband were both career USAF pilots, and her son Bruce spent 8 years as a USAF pilot. So the Air Force was always close to her heart.
From 1938 to 1941, Marion (known as Mollie when she was young) lived with her family in Buenos Aires, Argentina, when her father was stationed there. She often described this period as the “magical years.” Other assignments during her father’s and husband’s careers included Germany (twice); Washington, DC; Hawaii; and various USAF bases across the U.S.
Marion attended school at the University of Neuchatel in Switzerland, where she learned her superb cooking skills (never did she have a souffle deflate on her, and we ate very well!). Following her father’s assignments, she then attended the University of Utah, then Centenary College in Shreveport, LA.
She met her husband, George, at Langley AFB, VA, where they married in 1953. It rained that day, and that certainly brought them a lifetime of good luck. Marion and George loved each other deeply, and she missed George every day since his death in 2012. They were hand-in-hand to the very end. Nothing was more important to Marion than her husband and her family.
Throughout her life, until she was no longer physically able to do so due to her lifelong back problems, Marion was regularly volunteering as a member or in a leadership role for organizations such as the Officers Wives Club, Newcomers Club, AAUW, P.E.O., the Garden Club (award-winning Ikebana Japanese flower arranging skills), book clubs, and her church.
She especially loved working with and teaching children. For several years she volunteered as a docent at The Smithsonian, leading tours for school children. In Florida, she volunteered at The Haven for Children.
In the 1970s, Marion returned to school full-time at George Mason University, in Virginia, where she earned her B.A. in English, then pursued her M.A. in English. She loved books and was a voracious reader.
In 1985, Marion and George moved to Melbourne. They built a house in Suntree with a 45x15 lap pool. They enjoyed their time by traveling, swimming, volunteering, swimming some more, and spending time with their family and friends. They especially looked forward to visits with their grandchildren.
Marion and George thoroughly enjoyed traveling the world together, especially via Elder Hostel or by taking cruises, extending from the South China Sea to Scandinavia; from the Panama Canal to the Nile; from the Caribbean to the Mediterranean. They visited more than 50 countries together.
She had a love of learning through books, travel and film. The annual literary seminars held in Key West were a favorite. She was cultured yet unpretentious. From a young age, she reared her three children to develop a lifelong appreciation of the arts by taking them to museums, concerts, plays, opera and ballet.
Beautiful, caring, kind, elegant, empathetic, classy, a lady in the truest sense, always gracious, vibrant, glamorous, intelligent (she completed the daily NY Times crossword puzzle and often completed the Saturday puzzle), vivacious, a good listener, insightful, a stickler for correct grammar and usage by her children (and newspapers and TV reporters), devoted, loving, inquisitive, thoughtful, a wonderful hostess. These are some of the words and phrases we have heard friends and family use through the years to describe our mother.
Marion was predeceased by her parents, her two sisters (Joan, Margie) and one child (Susan).
She is survived by her children: Joan Snider (Charles) of St. Cloud, FL; Bruce Hoppe (Jana) of Satellite Beach, FL; and Steven Hoppe of Melbourne, FL; seven grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.
Funeral services will be held on Friday, September 22, at 10:00 a.m., at Beach Funeral Home at 4999 N. Wickham Road (across from Home Depot). Burial will be at a later date (family only) at Florida National Cemetery at Bushnell, FL, alongside her husband.
She was dearly loved and will be dearly missed.
In lieu of flowers, our mother requested friends and family consider making a donation to The Haven for Children (www.thehavenforchildren.com).