In Memoriam: Marcia Nigro Dresser, by Marlaina Lieberg
On Sept. 26, 2015, around 9:30 a.m. Eastern time, the world lost a wonderful woman and heaven gained a sparkling angel. Marcia Nigro Dresser was born on Oct. 15, 1950. She dedicated her life to helping others, and never met a person she did not like.
I first met Marcia when she came into the resource room for blind students at the Emerson School in Malden, Mass. Marcia was a tiny, bouncy little kid, and allowed me to immediately adopt her as my newest friend. I remember putting tiny Marcia into the teacher’s rolling chair and whisking her around the room, while she clapped her hands and made joyful laughing sounds.
As little girls, we had great imaginations! So, we were astronauts, doctors, housewives, actresses and more. Our love of baseball and music would often direct us to make up fun songs about the Red Sox, and harmonize together in the taxicab going to or from school each day. We spent nearly every weekend together for six years while we attended the same school, and remained close after we left and went to different schools for junior high and high school.
Marcia grew to become active in her church, her town, and of course the American Council of the Blind. Her service to ACB included serving on the board of publications, serving as president of the American Association of Blind Teachers, and serving as president of the Bay State Council of the Blind. These are just a few of the ways she gave of her time and her heart.
Marcia loved her husband, Steve Dresser, very much. She often referred to him as “Partner” when speaking to or about him. Marcia and Steve married in 1997, and together, they started a brailling service, as well as assisting Bay State Council with many projects, including BSCB’s “Council Connections” program. They lived in Connecticut for several years, and were invaluable to the Connecticut ACB affiliate, which they helped grow.
Marcia believed in blind people, and throughout her career as a teacher of visually impaired and blind students, she instilled belief of self in all her students. I remember many conversations over our friendship of 60 years when she would proudly share successes her kids had. I’d tell her that she was so important to those successes, and she’d quickly correct me, telling me the kids were fabulous.
Marcia had two guide dogs, Brina and Buttons. She loved her dogs dearly. Along with the love of her two guide dogs, Marcia loved cats. I can’t remember a time in her adult life when she did not have a kitty to cuddle and love.
Marcia was a person who, once you met her, you never forgot. I love you, Marcia, and I will never forget who you were and how you cared. Rest in peace, my sweet friend.