Martha Prater Legler

Martha Legler

CHAMPLIN, MN – Martha Prater Legler, 91, died Thursday morning, August 16, 2018 at her home in Champlin, Minnesota.

Marty was born on June 20, 1927 in Pana, Illinois, the only child of Roscoe and Pauline Otloe Prater. Marty graduated from Fairmont High School in Dayton, Ohio in 1945 and received her Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from Denison University in Granville, Ohio in 1949. She married Philip Legler on August 26, 1950. Phil’s occupation as an English professor caused them to move often, but in 1968 they moved to Marquette, Michigan when he accepted a teaching position at Northern Michigan University. Marty’s contributions to her husband’s MFA as well as his poetry led to a successful career. Marty lived in Marquette until 2009, and then moved to Minnesota to live near family.

Throughout her life she held various jobs healthcare and helping patients being among her favorite. Her first job was counting fish hooks at a local hardware store when she and her parents lived in Wisconsin. However, the occupation she enjoyed most was being a mother. She was extremely proud of her children and visited them often once she retired. She instilled in them a love of the arts, most notably theatre. She enjoyed musicals and saw many in San Diego and New York with daughter Barbara and in Minneapolis with daughter Amy. She gave of her time, volunteering at local schools, Marquette General Hospital, and Northern Michigan University’s theatre department. She loved the simple things in life, such as needlework, jigsaw puzzles, and reading. She was a talented seamstress and knitter, making many special clothing items for her children and those close to her. Her porch in the summer was home to tomato plants, various flowers, and a pitcher of sun tea. She enjoyed driving around Marquette’s Presque Isle Park (the “island”) daily in the summer. Marty moved many times throughout her life (26!), but she always made a cozy home, usually including a cat on her lap. Wherever she was, there was love.

Marty will be missed for her sense of humor, her kindness to everyone, and her ability to not take herself too seriously.

She is survived by 3 children: David (Rebecca) Legler of Rochester, Minnesota; Barbara (Craig) Wolf of San Diego, California; and Amy (Kirk) Guillaume of Brooklyn Park, Minnesota as well as grandchildren Matthew and Karen Legler, Katherine and Tim Guillaume, and numerous nieces and cousins.

Marty was preceded in death by her parents and former husband, Philip.

Marty’s family would like to thank Brookdale Champlin Senior Living and her care team at Intrepid Hospice for their good care and compassion.

Those who wish to remember Marty can do so by performing an act of kindness. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Marty’s name to an animal rescue organization. Marty’s obituary may be viewed at where relatives and friends may leave a note of remembrance.

A service will be held in Marquette, MI next summer.