Margaret “Marge” Helena Applegate was born February 1st, 1935, in La Porte, Indiana to the late Margaret (Heckard) and George Harding Applegate Sr. She departed this earth on Sunday, February 4th, 2024.
Margaret attended grade school in LaPorte, Jeffersonville, and Indianapolis, Indiana. She graduated as the gold medal recipient from East Chicago Roosevelt High School in 1954 and proceeded to Indiana University where she earned a baccalaureate degree in nursing, a master's degree in nursing education, and a doctoral degree in higher education. She completed a certification program in healthcare ethics at the University of Washington. During her studies, she was inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society in nursing in the Pi Lambda Theta Honor Society in education.
Her nursing career began in 1957 at James W. Riley Memorial Hospital for Children in Indianapolis. Following experience at the Veteran’s Administration Hospital in Indianapolis, she began teaching nursing at Marion County General Hospital School of Nursing. Marge returned to Indiana University in 1966 where she taught nursing for 33 years. She served as an Assistant Dean and Associate Dean in the School of Nursing and retired as a Professor Emerita. During her tenure at the IU School of Nursing, she also served in various roles in the Indiana State Nurses Association and the Indiana League for Nursing. She was named Indiana Nurse of the Year by the ILN in 1987. A sample of her state and national service includes appointment to the National Advisory Council on Nursing Education of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. She also served on the Education Work Group and the Steering Committee of the National Commission for Nursing Implementation Project. She received a distinguished alumni award from the IU SON and was awarded the Emily Holmquest Lifetime Achievement Award. She served in multiple roles including the Board of Governors Executive Committee and as Vice President of the National League for Nursing and was awarded the NLN Distinguished Service award. She was elected to fellowship in the American Academy of Nursing at the 100th anniversary of the IU School of Nursing (2014), she was honored to be selected as one of 100 Legacy leaders among IU SON alumni. While she won several teaching awards at the school and campus levels, she most treasured the teaching awards given by the students.
Marge was an active member of several Lutheran churches in Bloomington and Indianapolis. For the last 13 years, she was a member of Saint Stephen's ELCA in Plainfield, Indiana, and enjoyed active participation in the church including membership on the church council and chairmanship of the Social Ministry Committee.
She is survived by her brother, George H. Applegate, Jr. of Griffith, Indiana; sister, Diane (Allan) Brands of Crown Point Indiana; and sister-in-law, Carolyn Ferry Applegate of Lansing Illinois. She is also survived by six nieces and nephews, nine great-nieces and nephews, two great-great nephews, well-loved cousins, and treasured friends. Color Marge was an avid IU basketball fan, a supporter of Coach Miller and Coach Crean, and a loyal supporter of Coach Knight with fond memories of Coach McCracken and the teams they led. She supported all IU sports, but basketball was near and dear to her heart.
Visitation will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, February 17th, 2024, at Frank L. Keszei Funeral Home, Essling Chapel, 1117 Indiana Avenue, La Porte, Indiana. A funeral service will follow the visitation at 11:30 a.m. in the funeral home. Burial will follow at Pine Lake Cemetery in La Porte.
In lieu of flowers, individuals are invited to donate to the scholarship fund of St. Stephen’s ELCA at 1001 Concord Road, Plainfield, Indiana 46168. Others may wish to contribute to the Indiana University School of Nursing fund for a Professorship in Health Care Ethics at the IU Foundation at PO Box 500, Bloomington, Indiana 47402 with “SON Ethics Professorship” on the memo line, or a charity of personnel choice.
To light a virtual candle, share a story of Marge’s life, or leave a message of comfort for her family, please visit www.EsslingFuneralHome.com.