Marilyn Nugent, glass artist, teacher

April 1, 2024

Marilyn Nugent, 83, a local glass artist, died suddenly in her home Friday, March 15, 2024. Well known throughout the community, Marilyn was famous in Lewes for her late 18th century historic house. She was an inveterate chef, gardener, dog-lover, clothing model and the manager of an Airbnb.

Marilyn grew up in Washington, D.C. She began her career working at the Model Secondary School for the Deaf, on the campus of Gallaudet University, as a French/English teacher. She spent a great deal of time living in Paris, where she became fluent in French.

Around 1980, she made a life-changing decision to switch gears by abandoning her formal teaching career. It was then that she became a full-time artist by renting rooms in her house and teaching glass-making at Glen Echo Park, Md. Her initial efforts focused on stained glass, but she eventually became successful and well-known for fused glass-bead making, creating exquisite jewelry and serving pieces.

Ultimately, Marilyn moved to Lewes full time to care for her aging mother. It was then that she developed a glass studio inside her house and eventually operated the upper floor as an Airbnb.

She enjoyed a thrilling life-changing experience about 20 years ago when she was reunited with her biological son, who had been adopted at birth. That relationship brought a renewed sense of family into her life.

She traveled extensively throughout the world and maintained strong friendships with people in all corners of the globe. While home in Lewes, she was famous for serving gourmet dinner parties, walking her dogs on the bay beach every morning at sunrise, and gardening not only her yard, but contributing to the railroad path’s garden.

Marilyn is survived by her son, Jon; daughter-in-law, Alki; four grandchildren; several nieces, nephews, great-nieces and -nephews, and many cousins; not to mention the broad community of friends, clients and acquaintances in and around Lewes and the world. A celebration of her life is planned for July to coincide with her birthday.

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