Marjorie Ogilvie has spent fifty-two years as an American Red Cross volunteer, traveling the world with her family as a military wife and serving wherever she was needed. As she hangs up her volunteer hat at almost 90 years old, this mother of four and grandmother of five can rest assured her legacy will not end as her volunteer service ends.
Ogilvie’s story of giving began when her husband in the Army brought their family to live in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
While many women at the time did not go into the workforce, Ogilvie was born to give of herself and her time to others. When the call came that there was a need for nurses aids with the Red Cross, Ogilvie put up her hand and volunteered.
After six weeks of extensive training, she began volunteering with the Red Cross. Ogilvie’s position included taking temperatures, pulses and respiration readings, cleaning units and helping wherever help was required. With a family of four children and volunteering on a regular basis, she was a very busy lady.
Her husband’s Army career took their family all over the world, even as far as Japan. This never deterred Ogilvie. She always found time to scout out the local Red Cross and continue volunteering for a cause she truly believed in, despite the numerous moves.
Throughout the rest of her volunteer career with the Red Cross, Ogilvie’s positions entailed working in hospitals. Often, she would work an average of four to five hours a day. At her most recent volunteer assignment at Fort Belvoir, she was an important part of the team in helping with women’s health, registration, paperwork and filing.
“I loved helping the soldiers and their families. The rewards were great and it was always an honor to work with great people. I made friends for life,” Ogilvie stated as she recounted the value of her time volunteering with the Red Cross.
When asked the secret to her longevity in volunteering for 52 years with the Red Cross, she replied with a little smile on her face, “You just have to live long enough!”
A passion for giving has not stopped with Ogilvie and her husband. In fact, their youngest son went on to pursue a career at the same organization where Ogilvie dedicated so many years of her life. Court Ogilvie is now the Vice President of Joint Account Management at the Red Cross, after a 17-year career path including blood services, technology, consolidation and testing.
Court explained that he and his siblings acquired an internal calling to give, and learned to treat everyone with the same respect. This influenced Court to look for opportunities to give to his community and the world. While he was successful in finding a meaningful and socially conscious career, Court says his parents influenced his path but “never talked about it. They just led by example.”
Court feels proud to be part of something so special, and is also very proud of his mom and her service with the Red Cross. Her life’s example of giving to others certainly influenced him and his family in a positive way.
Although Ogilvie has handed in her locker key at Fort Belvoir, the going away parties have ended, and she has moved to Florida, her journey with the Red Cross continues through the generations.