Marilyn Frances Fortelka Kreml, 91, died peacefully Saturday morning, April 2, 2016 in the arms of her daughters in her apartment in Vernon Hills.
Marilyn was born June 1, 1924 in Riverside, IL, the younger daughter of Dr. Frank and May Fortelka. She attended Trinity High School and graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Music Education in 1946. She married Charles Kreml, the man who swept her off her feet, on June 28, 1947. Charlie finished dental school and set up practice in Northbrook, IL. Daughters Pamela, Melanie and Heather soon followed. The family relocated to Lake Forest, IL in 1963. Summers were always spent at the Kreml summer home, where Charlie and Marilyn first met, on Lake Katherine in Hazelhurst, Wisconsin.
Her career was in education, first as a music teacher and then many years as a kindergarten teacher. She completed her Master’s Degree in education while teaching. Her long career in education included teaching music at Lake Forest Country Day School, and kindergarten at the School of St. Mary in Lake Forest and later at Forrestal School and A. J. Katzenmaier School, both in North Chicago. She was a leader in progressive, innovative kindergarten curricula as well as an elected representative to many educational organizations and committees.
In retirement, Charlie and Marilyn sailed their 41 foot Hunter Vision sailboat up and down the Intercoastal Waterway between Hilton Head Island and south Florida. How they loved the sea and each other! Theirs was a fairytale love affair for 57 years.
Marilyn is survived by their three daughters, Pamela Sagan (William) of San Francisco, CA, Melanie Rummel (S. Michael) of Lake Forest, IL and Heather Michalke (James, Jr.) of Lebanon, IN, eight grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. How they enjoyed her “stone soup” and the canoe trips to Zanzibar to pay homage to the Chief.
A private funeral mass will be held at the Church of St. Mary in Lake Forest, Illinois with interment at Lake Forest Cemetery. Memorials should be directed to the Alliance for Lupus Research, 28 West 44th Street, Suite 500, New York, New York 10036 or the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, 1 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 1200, Chicago, IL 60602-3902.