by Sophie Palomo, Victory High School Advanced Placement Student
Harriet Marshall, 85, has an interesting past. The oldest of five children, she grew up in a rural town in the Lodi area of California. At the age of five, she could not wait until she was tall enough to work in the local peach orchards. When she got older, on Friday nights she would drive out into the country with her friends, shine their car lights into the streets and dance the night away.
After high school, Harriet went to work for a tractor company, and then a company that made tire molds. Later, she worked for the State Legislative Counsel’s Office in Sacramento for 32 years. She began as a clerk and climbed her way up to office manager. Harriet met several governors while in this job, including Ronald Reagan. She said that it was not uncommon for Governor Reagan to start a friendly conversation. Harriet remembers peeking into his office to see some of his guests, which included movie stars.
In 2009, Harriet met her second husband Gordon Marshall at Eskaton’s Key Club. She heard he needed transportation to a doctor's appointment so she offered to give him a ride. From then on Gordon started inviting Harriet over to his apartment to sit on the patio, sip wine and listen to music. One night while they were sitting on the patio enjoying the evening, Gordon proposed marriage and Harriet accepted.
Now, Harriet assists at a local elementary school every week, working with kindergartners. She is also a proud great-grandmother. One life lesson Harriet wanted to share was: “Be helpful to others and be happy in your work, regardless of its importance. Live, love and be happy in all you do.”