East Teacher Assistant Passes From Battle With Cancer

Adelfo Perez, Staff Reporter

Marla J. Page (Dollinger)

Marla J. Page passed away Aug. 22 at IU Health University Hospital due to a lengthy battle with cancer. She emotionally touched many people, including students, staff members and the community of Columbus.

Page was the Special Education teacher assistant for the English department at East for the past 19 years. Her goal was to make everyone happy, no matter who it was. She would go into classes part of her day and help everybody, not just kids who have disabilities, and then she would sit in the English resource and help others in need. Even though she was not a teacher, she was able to connect with students on a whole different level.

“She was an amazing person, I do not think there is anybody you can talk to who would not say the same thing,” Special Education teacher Susanne Romanski said.

Page was a very giving person and never thought of herself. She would sacrifice whatever she needed to in order to help other people. Setting her standards high made everybody around her want to live up to her standard.

What she did to the students and staff members makes everyone feel that even though she is not here physically, her love and joy is still with us.

“She is everywhere yet not with us,” English teacher Julie Hult said.

Page always had a way of knowing what students needed. She would anonymously help with school work, buying new shoes or a letter jacket. Even if she did not get any credit, it would make her happy to bring a smile to someone’s face.

Besides impacting students and staff, she also left a mark on the community. She worked at Sans Souci for decades helping those in need.

“One time there was this family who could not afford heat so she turned off her heat so she could save up and give them the money,” Romanski said.

Page left those around her with memories that will forever be cherished.