Marian Hagan, homemaker and field hockey star in school

Marian B. Hagan
Marian B. Hagan
Posted: August 08, 2014

Marian Brandt Hagan, 82 of Deptford, who was named to the hall of fame at Gloucester City Junior-Senior High School in 1995, died of congestive heart failure on Sunday, Aug. 3, at the Sicklerville home of her daughter, Marian Malinowski.

Born in Gloucester City, Mrs. Hagan graduated in 1951 from Gloucester High, where she was a starting defensive left wing on the field hockey team for her final three years.

"It's one of the harder positions because all the hockey sticks were right-handed," son Robert J. Jr. said. "It made it more difficult to play the left side of the field."

Though uncertain why she was chosen for the hall of fame, he said, "she was known for her speed and aggressiveness."

And that did not diminish into her 20s and 30s.

Mrs. Hagan was a member of the Gloucester City team in the former West Jersey Field Hockey Association until she was 35.

"She was always a feisty and determined player," said Shirley Gradwell, who played as a 17-year-old on that Gloucester City team when Mrs. Hagan was an older teammate.

The association fielded teams from Audubon, Pitman, Paulsboro, and Moorestown, Gradwell said.

Press clippings show that in 1960, Gradwell said, "she did compete in the New Atlantic Tournaments" at Adelphia College in Garden City, N.Y., and in 1961, the year in which Mrs. Hagan turned 30, her Gloucester City team played a team from England in Moorestown.

But she didn't pass on her talent, not immediately.

Son Robert said that when his sister "reported for the first day of gym," in the seventh grade at the junior-senior high, she found that the gym teacher was a former West Jersey teammate of her mother.

The teacher, he said, "had a brand new stick, brand new shoes, and half a dozen hockey balls for her to go take home so she could start practicing."

But his sister declined to accept them, he said, because "my sister doesn't have an athletic bone in her body."

The sports gene skipped a generation.

"My daughter played field hockey in middle school and high school," Malinowski said of her daughter, Lauren.

"She made the varsity as a sixth grader" at Ann Mullen Middle School in Gloucester Township, "and the varsity as a freshman at Gloucester Catholic" High School, Malinowski said.

All through her schooling, Malinowski said, Lauren carried on the tradition.

Mrs. Hagan was a homemaker most of her adult life.

Besides her son and daughter, she is survived by son Mark, a brother, a sister, and four grandchildren. Her husband of 60 years, Robert J., died at the end of July.

A viewing was set from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 7, at the McCann-Healey Funeral Home, 851 Monmouth St., Gloucester City, before an 11 a.m. Funeral Mass at St. Mary's Church, 426 Monmouth St., Gloucester City, with interment in New St. Mary's Cemetery, Bellmawr.

Donations may be sent to the American Foundation for the Blind, Resource Development, Suite 1102, Two Penn Plaza, New York, N.Y. 10121.

Condolences may be offered to the family at www.mccannhealey.com.


wnaedele@phillynews.com

610-313-8134 @WNaedele

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