Submitted by Colleen Smith
Marjorie Putt Madden
Marjorie Putt Madden died Oct. 7 and in her memory Samson Park — the sculpture garden adjacent to Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre in Greenwood Village — will be renamed Marjorie Park.
Marjorie is lovingly remembered as a wise and devoted wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, as well as an artist with a twinkling eye for beauty and an affinity with nature.
Born May 27, 1930, in Omaha, Neb., she attended the University of Nebraska from 1948 to 1950. She married John W. Madden, Jr. in 1950. She was the mother of Cynthia Madden Leitner (Roger Leitner), Scott Madden, and J. Madden (Linda Poletti).
A homemaker, oil-painter, community volunteer and philanthropist, Marjorie also was a businesswoman. She served as a trustee on the board of directors of the John Madden Company Ltd, a real estate development firm. From 1978 –1985, she headed Madden Specialties, creating commercial office design with imported Italian fabrics, marble, art, fixtures and tiles. Together with her husband, she acquired a private collection of fine art and decorative arts now exhibited as the Madden Collection at the Madden Museum of. Marjorie also served on the board of directors as a founder of the Museum of Outdoor Arts, which recently celebrated a 30th anniversary and exhibits its collection in Greenwood Village, Englewood and elsewhere, including the White House Rose Garden.
Marjorie is survived by several generations who called her, affectionately, “Marmie.” Her grandchildren are Cynthia’s adult children — John Schuyler Madden (Sky), Marjorie Blair Madden Bui (Blair) and Paul Leitner — and J.’s twins — Joseph and Grace Madden. Her great-grandchildren are Sky’s sons — Schuyler Madden, Gabriel Cagle and Walter Madden — and Blair’s daughters —Cynthia Lily Brown and Willow Bui.
The family treasures memories of their matriarch as a gentle soul known for her kindness and optimism. Her friendship and conversation were sought out. She painted in oils, both portraits and landscapes; and she was involved in the art world since her youth. Throughout her adult life, she directed the interior decoration of buildings constructed by her husband’s development firm.
She was an avid bird watcher and shell collector, especially during her time at the family’s pink house at the water’s edge on Sanibel Island, Fla. She enjoyed observing osprey, pelicans, ibis, herons and egrets, as well as dolphins. Her bird watching led her to become involved in the Ding Darling Wildlife Preserve. She was a member of the Junior League and Kappa Kappa Gamma Sorority.
Marmie also was passionate about cooking, playing cards and arranging flowers. She always kept a jigsaw puzzle in the works. She loved decorating her home, especially at Christmastime.
“Her legacy resides in her family, all of whom attribute to her the reinforcement of values and relationships through her kind words and gracious actions. She impressed upon us her aesthetic, her sense of beauty,” said Cynthia Madden Leitner. “She will be sorely missed by all who met her and survive her.”
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