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We invite our followers to get to know Marylou Thompson, one of our Research volunteers at the Presidential Library!

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Marylou taking a well deserved, but short break from her duties in the McKinley Presidential Library

Marylou was born in Cleveland, Ohio, but spent much of her childhood traveling with her family. Her father was in the service, her family moved all over the United States while she and her siblings grew up. She recalls memories of her past, particularly recalling 5th grade as being one of her favorite memories. At the time, she had moved back to Ohio and was attending St. Mary’s in Painesville, Ohio. She really enjoyed school, but also loved being able to spent lots of time with her loving grandparents. She continued to move with her family until she graduated high school and started her own career path.

After high school, she attended Central Michigan University, then attended nursing school at Delta College in Saginaw, Michigan. After graduating from nursing school, she received her Bachelor’s Degree, majoring in science and business, from the University of St. Francis in Illinois. Finally, she attended graduate school and received her MBA at the University in Chicago. During her time in school and out, she worked as a nurse for many years. She found that being a caretaker was her calling and it came naturally to her.

As a nurse, she worked primarily in the ICU department of the hospital, and she kept moving up to different roles in life. She enjoyed her work so much so that she ended up working in hospital administration for some years. She wanted to do more though, and soon moved to the long term care industry until retirement.

In 2016, she moved to North Canton to be closer to her sister. She had just retired and was looking for something to do to pass the time when she stumbled upon the McKinley National Memorial one day. She remembers walking around the parks and when she saw the monument, she had to go see what it was. After she visited the monument that day, she went to our museum and asked to become a volunteer at the McKinley Presidential Library & Museum. She found something else that she loved to do and her years of being a multi-tasker and nurse gave her very valuable skills that we honor here in our library. She has volunteered with us for three years and she is an incredible asset to our team, keeping us organized and taking care of our accessions and cataloguing items.

In her spare time, she also volunteers in the library at MAPS Air museum in Green, Ohio . She loves reading various types of military books, fictional or non-fictional, and she loves to travel. She is very big on history and all about learning as much as she can from her travels and from her own experience.

One of her favorite aspects of being a volunteer here is that she is actually able to see the results of our projects and requests in a short time. Being a nurse and working in the healthcare industry, quick results weren’t easily noticed because of the varying aspects of that field, but she loves being able to see the results of hers and everyone else’s hard work. She describes her time here as not being work, it is like hanging out with friends and working together as a team. She loves what she does here and is truly a valuable resource to all who know her.

We want to thank Marylou for letting us interview her and allowing us to share her story on our social media. Our team at the McKinley Presidential Library loves being able to share stories of our volunteers with people outside of the museum and we want you to be apart of that too!

If you would like information on how to become a volunteer, be sure to private message our page or call the museum at: (330) 455-7043