The two women became friends and continued working together on the production of a command performance for Queen Elizabeth at Ottawa’s Museum of Civilization during her visit for Canada’s 125th birthday celebrations in 1992.
During the performance, one of the dancers had a heart attack and Ms. Anthony Linden rushed to the hospital with the dancer, worried about his inability to speak French and communicate with doctors. Not realizing that her concern for the dancer’s well-being had meant keeping the Queen waiting, she hurried back to the museum. The Queen congratulated her on the wonderful show she had produced.
Ms. Brownlee said: “Whether you were the Queen or Barbra Streisand, Marge was comfortable with you. She knew exactly how to handle people. She’d say to me, ‘You know people just like them in everyday life. These ones just happen to be famous. Treat them with the same respect as you would anyone else and you’ll get along just fine.’”
“She just wanted everything to be right with all people,” Mr. Linden said.
Mila Mulroney told The Globe and Mail in an e-mail interview: “Marge was my friend. … a kind, decent and creative soul, who, along with her husband Allen, brought Brian and me many happy moments. We laughed together, we settled all the world’s problems. Most of all we enjoyed each other’s company. … We have lost a cherished friend. Marge will be missed by all of us who knew and loved her. We will never see the likes of her again.”
As much as Ms. Anthony Linden played down celebrity, stargazing was one of her favourite Hollywood activities. Bonnie Brownlee recalls going to restaurants in Los Angeles where her friend would quickly “case the joint.”
“She could tell you who was in the room, who they were, what they did and what show they just finished. She was constantly on top of stuff like that.” Ms. Brownlee fondly recalls her friend’s favourite greeting, “So tell me everything!”
Ms. Anthony Linden retired from CTV in 1990, moving briefly to live in Ottawa before returning to California. In an obituary that appeared in Halifax’s Chronicle Herald, her niece, Donna Shewfelt, wrote: “Marjorie Anthony Linden felt that a person who is born by the sea should live by the sea. She spent her retirement years with Allen in her treasured Malibu overlooking the Pacific.”
Toward the end of her life, lupus disease, and other health problems, confined Ms. Anthony Linden to a wheelchair, which she loved to decorate with flowers and to be pushed in at high speeds. A glamorous lover of fine clothes, she never wore the same outfit twice, and enjoyed attending social events where she would tease and laugh with everyone.
“I used to say, ‘Of course I fell for her.’ If she had wanted, she could have had the Pope fall for her,” said Mr. Linden. “She charmed everyone.”
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