Marina Leone McLeod
Last updated 2/2/2023 at 8:37am
Marina Leone McLeod left us on Dec. 26, 2022, succumbing to cancer at 34 years of age. She left behind her adoring husband, Mike McLeod, her father, Jim Gresham, her siblings Miranda, Tom, Moira, and Peter, as well as beloved nephews and niece.
Marina grew up in Cheney, Wash. where from an early age she showed a propensity for music, math, and tenderness. She performed several years in the Spokane Children's Choir, and then in middle school took up the trombone. She exceled throughout middle school and high school in both jazz and marching bands. She left Cheney to attend Colorado College where her prowess and interest for mathematics grew. She graduated with a degree in mathematics, and stayed another year working as a math Paraeducator, teaching and tutoring undergraduate students. During that period, at a math talk given by a mutual friend, she met Mike McLeod. They struck up a conversation and in minutes, Mike determined this was the most amazing human being he had ever met. He took every opportunity to spend time with her. Mutually their love grew appreciating time together engaged in art, music, math, and extremely competitive board game sessions. They moved to Salt Lake City where Marina attended University of Utah for graduate work in mathematics. She earned a master's degree and was on her way to earning a doctorate when her mother, Susanne Gresham, became ill with cancer. Marina and Mike moved to Bellingham, Wash. to assist in caring for Susanne. During this time, Marina started work for the Ocean Research College Academy (ORCA) part of Everett Community College. ORCA is an early college program for high school students that integrate marine biology with other disciplines. Marina's job was to teach the mathematics part of the program. Marina not only taught, she imparted passion for mathematics along with love and care for her students. She spent hours preparing engaging, creative lessons using animation, music, and video to make mathematics comprehensible and engaging for her students. To honor Marina's work, a named fund to support ORCA has been established through the Everett Community College Foundation (everettcc.edu/foundation ; click "Donate" and specify "ORCA to honor Marina" as the program, or send a similarly earmarked check to: EvCC Foundation, 2000 Tower Street, Everett, WA 98201). A celebration of Marina's life will be held at St. James Presbyterian Church, Bellingham, Wash. on Feb. 11, 2023, at 3pm.