In Memory

Deen Goforth

Deen Marlow Goforth Parrish
Nordhoff Librarian, and then some.
Deen Marlow Goforth Parrish died on June 15, 2012 at 89. A native of Putnam County (TN), she lived in Vashon, Washington at the time of her death.

A teacher, librarian, scientist, spiritualist, poet and a dedicated conservationist, she was a world traveler who never met a stranger she couldn't share with or a rock she didn't like. She lived in the present moment and few things were more important than good conversation and a hot cup of tea.

She was a prolific writer of essays, musings and poetry spanning more than six decades. Earlier this year, she published a volume of poetry and most recently, she was working on her memoirs.

Family and friends will remember Deen especially for her irrepressible curiosity, sense of humor, pragmatism and unflagging courage in staring down even the most daunting of life's challenges.

She was born Clara Ella Deen Marlow on January 6, 1923 in Putnam County, Tennessee to William James Carmen and Roxey Edmonds Marlow. After her mother died in 1939, she moved with her father and sister Hazel to California. In 1941 she married James Goforth and the two settled in Ojai to raise three daughters. They were divorced in 1974. She was librarian and teacher in Ventura County until she retired in 1979.

In 1975, she married Clyde Parrish. Following his death in 1979, she moved to Washington to be near her family.

She is survived by her husband Harry Kirschner, whom she married in 1993, sister Beverly McKenney of Old Hickory, Tennessee; daughters Jeanne Goforth Greatorex of Watsonville, California, Kimberly Goforth and son-in-law Eric Gill of Vashon, Washington, Diana Goforth Clarke of Everett, Washington; grandchildren Martin and Jeff Greatorex, Christopher and Matthew Wright, Amanda Clarke and Thane and Tate Gill; niece Tamara Thole Steiner of Clayton, California, and 11 great-grandchildren. Her sister, Hazel Marlow Thole, died in 2001.

She will be remembered during the family's annual memorial service at the Marlow Family Cemetery on Aug. 19. To leave condolences and messages for the family, please visit the online guest book at

Read more: Herald Citizen - Deen Marlow Goforth Parrish Deen Marlow Goforth Parrish died on June 15