Marjorie Kusman Grant
Marjorie (“Margie”) Kusman Grant will be remembered as a fiercely loving and protective matriarch, an optimist who viewed the world through a lens of hope and humor, and – to those who knew her best – a dynamic, spirited (and, yes, opinionated) firecracker, who lit up the rooms she entered. Margie set an example for those around her of how to live life in the present and how to appreciate loved ones. She passed away after a brief illness, fittingly on Holy Saturday, April 16, 2022, at her home in Brookhaven, Georgia, surrounded by loved ones. She was 94 years young.
She is survived by a source of great pride, her son Wayne Grant (Kim), and her loving honorary daughter and best friend, Phyllis Grant. Margie is also survived by her four beautiful grandchildren, Elyse Grant Whitehead (Todd) of Oakland, CA, Brandon Grant (Savi) of Brooklyn, NY, Jessie Grant (Atlanta), and Ava Grant (Atlanta). She was also a beloved great-grandmother to Eleanor and Henry Whitehead, and newest arrival, Eli Grant. Additionally, Margie is survived by her stepdaughter Andrea Grant, too many nieces and nephews to mention, but sources of joy, and several dear friends.
Margie was preceded in death by her parents, Konstanten and Pauline Struzinsky Kusman, her husband Bill, and her brothers and sisters, Jackie, Genie, Dot, Mary, Connie, Eddie, Fran, Frankie, Jean, Larry, and Elaine.
Margie was born on November 29, 1927 in New York, New York and was one of 12 children. After graduating high school in New York, Margie worked in the banking industry where she was known as a wiz with numbers. If you asked her, she would tell you a story about having once met a young, down-and-out Tony Bennett at a bar; she cheered him up and assured him that he would “make it,” and she was right (as always). In her 20s, she met the love of her life, Bill, and their son Wayne was born. Together, Margie and Bill experienced New York at its finest, enjoying Prudenti’s Vicino Mare, Sid Allen’s and Archers Ristorante, where Frank Sinatra was a frequent diner.
In the late 1970s Margie and Bill bought a home in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. After Bill’s unfortunate passing, Margie made Florida her permanent residence where she took up tennis. Ultimately, she moved to Atlanta in 1989 because, of all her activities, the one Margie enjoyed most was spending time with her grandchildren. From then on, Margie never lived more than five minutes away from her grandchildren; she taught them how to play gin rummy and tennis, baked and indulged in sweet treats with them, dyed Easter eggs and did arts-and-crafts with them, and showed them daily how much she loved them.
Margie continued to play tennis in Atlanta and did so as an A level player into her 70s. She was a fierce Bridge competitor too and made many dear friends in this activity she loved so much. Margie was a deeply religious woman and she enjoyed her daily morning ritual of reading the Bible. Margie also had a keen wit, was a voracious listener of audiobooks, and enjoyed watching re-runs of Castle and Monk on television.
Margie had a way of making her loved ones feel seen, heard, and welcome. She was a great listener, and she gave expert advice. She believed unconditionally in those whom she loved. Her hugs carried a feeling of safety, and her laughter made those around her feel joy. To those who were lucky enough to know and be loved by Margie, the sentiment we carry forward is gratefulness, for we are all better for having known and been loved by her.
The immediate family will have a private Celebration of Life this summer. If you wish to make a gift in Margie’s memory, please consider a contribution to The Alzheimer’s Association or a charity of one’s choice.