Marsha Fox (Maass) , 58 of Spring Hill Florida passed away on December 3, after fighting a brave and gallant war on lung disease that included a double lung transplant.
She was born on March 28, 1960 in Merriden Connecticut and grew up on the shoreline in the Town of Clinton, where her Mother still resides.
Marsha loved all of Gods creations. There was not an animal, reptile, fish or bird that she did not desire to have as a pet. Not being allowed to have a zoo at home, she moved on with her horse, horse trailer, dogs, goats and relocated several times landing in Louisiana and then finally West Central Florida. She settled down, and grew her roots in the community of Spring Hill.
She was a Master Dog Groomer and ran a successful Grooming business and Mobile grooming truck. She was known as â€œZ-Groominatorâ€. It was in this shop where she met her Husband Rich, who brought his scruffy Boston Terrier â€œGordyâ€ in for a bath. Marsha immediately fell head over heals in loveâ€¦. with Gordy.
Marsha and Rich would meet unassumingly at their favorite little restaurant The Breakfast Club every morning for years. They where joined together forever on Oct. 9, 2005 with Breakfast Club owner Joe Mamo as Best man, and his Wife Judy also in the Wedding Party. Rich and Marsha never left each others side, and were also best friends.
The only demand Marsha ever made was that Rich build his aging Mother a place to live out her life in their home, where she died peacefully. Taking care of her was not a burden to Marsha. She was a wonderful caregiver who enjoyed having tea every morning with her Mother in Law Gerri Maass. There was a special and loving bond between them.
Marsha was plagued with health and breathing problems for many years that eventually brought her to UF Shands in Gainesville for a successful bi-lateral lung transplant on August 28, 2017. This was not without many hurdles that she worked very hard to overcome.
Suddenly, on Easter Sunday Morning this year, just 8 months post transplant, she woke up short of breath and was immediately rushed back to USF Shands Hospital where it was determined she had lost 80% of her donor lungs to Antibody Mediated Rejection. She immediately underwent Chemotherapy and plasmapherisis for weeks to stop the progression. Unfortunately, Shands could not offer Marsha any more treatment options and told her to go home to wait and see. They denied her a second transplant based on the antibody mediated rejection being a host to donor rejection with no cure.
Marsha, not being one to ever be told what to do, desired to try alternate treatment options. One option was stem cell therepy that was done six weeks prior to her passing. Her health was in a steady decline from that point on. She was a true warior and fought with every last bit of strength to just enjoy every episode of Naked and Afraid, a rerun of Live PD, Big Bang Theory, or Friends. Always with her Faithful Boston Terrier's Rita Mae and The Dude, and her Husband by her side.
She was blessed to have her Pulmonologist Dr. Dominic Sorresso in Hudson Florida care for her the 7 years prior to her lung transplant, and also at the end of her life's journey. He promised to be there for the rest of her days, and was a man of his word. There is no doubt that If not for this man, Marsha would have not been given the last 7 years.
More than anything, she loved to make people smile, unless they hurt someone she loved. Marsha's other passion was to design and make jewelry. Affectionately called â€œThe Bead Ladyâ€ by hospital staff, she was always giving away her designs to people that showed kindness or a kindred spirit. She even made nice things for the lady who brought her trays of hospital food, or cleaned her room, because they were kind. She also gave bracelets to many patients, and told them her payment was their smile.
Marsha had a tough life. She was a tough women. She never cried for anyone to see. She never showed her pain and misery, but showed that smile and laughed to always maintain her balance. Her later adult life was plagued by one serious illness or hurdle one after another, yet she always found a way to push through and conquer her adversities and still make people laugh and smile along the way.
Survived by Husband and soul mate Richard Maass, Mother Mildred Stienfeld, Sister Linda Johnson, Brother James Fox, Her favorite young man Grandson Justin Bounds, Grand daughter Amaya, Step Daughter Devon, Her other favorite young man Nephew-Son Micheal Arabas, many neices, nephews, great neices and great nephews. Also Survived by her loyal and loving Boston Terriers Rita Mae, and The Dude.
She is predeceased by her Father Stuart, Sister Susanne, Brother Butch, and Mother in law Gerri Maass.
Marsha is also predeceased by her furry canine family members Buddy, Zanny VonNozenbalz, Dee Dee, Gordy, Jinco, Chipper, Stinky, Schultz, Ratso Rizzo, Z-Dog, and Viper.
She passed away peacefully with her husband Richard by her side, and a room full of great people loving her.
Gathering for a Celebration of Marsha and her life will be at The Breakfast Club of Port Richey 10156 US 19n Port Richey Fl 34668 on Wednesday December 19 From 6 to 8 pm. Coffee, danish, cake, music, prayer, love, tears, and smiles will be plentiful.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests you please become an organ donor.