Marilyn Wagstaff Rosenlof of Santa Maria, California, passed away on November 13, 2023 at the age of 87 in Mission Viejo, California, where she was lovingly cared for by her daughter and family.
Marilyn was born on April 11, 1936 in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Walter E. Wagstaff and Dessa Smith Wagstaff. Her childhood was filled with love, affection and memorable experiences shared alongside her sister, Terril Wagstaff McNeil, who she remained close to throughout their lives.
Marilyn attended high school in Boise, Idaho, where her father’s pioneering work in radio and television with NBC left a lasting impression on her. Marilyn thrived in drama and musical theater and was an active participant in ROTC. Her talents and interests led her to Brigham Young University in 1958, but a holiday visit home to Portland, Oregon changed the course of her life when she met Jon Roger Rosenlof, her future husband.
Marilyn and Jon’s love story began with their marriage in the Salt Lake City LDS temple on September 4, 1957. The newlyweds set up their first home in Berkeley, California where Jon attended Cal State Berkeley. Their family grew with the birth of two daughters; one in March 1959 and another in December 1961. Many moves and exciting adventures followed, including living in Germany and traveling extensively. Their family was made complete when their son was born in Berlin, Germany in February 1968.
Despite their many relocations, Marilyn had a remarkable ability to transform any house into a “home” filled with love. A place where friends and family were always welcomed with open arms, and a hub of frequent, joyful gatherings. The years in Germany were filled with cherished memories and the formation of lifelong friendships.
Settling in Santa Maria in 1975, Marilyn and Jon left the corporate world to start a CPA firm. Marilyn, a dynamic and passionate individual, immersed herself in raising her family, serving various positions in her church and community where she helped start the rape crisis center. Her commitment to education led her to earn her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Marriage & Family Therapy. As a licensed therapist, Marilyn was devoted to helping others, especially women, through counseling.
A fervent believer in the power of lifting others, Marilyn was dedicated to her family, her faith in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and service. She and Jon served an LDS mission in Anchorage, Alaska, in 2001, reflecting her strong faith in Jesus Christ and the power of prayer.
Marilyn’s journey was preceded by the loss of her parents, sister, and her husband of 60 years. She leaves behind a loving family: her son Scott (Beth) Rosenlof of Bountiful, Utah; daughters Dana (Jeff) Graff of Mission Viejo, California, and Kristin (Scott) Salvesen of Santa Maria, California; 12 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren.
The family extends heartfelt gratitude to the staff at The Heavenly Home and Vision Viejo Hospice.
A private service in her honor will be held on November 21, 2023, in Santa Maria. Flowers can be sent to the Santa Maria Cemetery District at 1501 S College Drive, Santa Maria.
- Date: November 21, 2023
- Venue: Santa Maria Cemetery
- Location: Santa Maria, CA - (Get Directions)