RIP Preshy Marker
Los Angeles Times
July 5, 2015
Esther Stomne Reyna, also known by her professional stage name, Preshy Marker, was born on August 26, 1932 in Chicago, Illinois, the third daughter of Edwin and Nellie Stomne. Within a few years of her birth, the family settled in Maplewood, New Jersey, where Preshy (a nickname given to her by her father) grew up with her three sisters, Margery, Ruth ("Cookie") and Julie. She graduated from Maplewood High School in 1950, and earned a bachelor's degree from Vassar College in Child Study, in 1954.
Although Preshy was set to go to teaching school after graduating college, she could not help but pursue her long time love of singing. She was discovered in the summer of 1954 by bandleader Fred Waring, and embarked on tour with him and his group, the Pennsylvanians. Preshy's first singing role of note was in the musical revue "Hear Hear" in 1955, and she later became a featured member of the "Ziegfield Follies" 1956 Broadway production. She later left Waring to join a musical quartet, The Martins, led by songwriter-composer Hugh Martin. She made a number of television appearances, guesting on "The Steve Allen Show" and acting in "Death Valley Days."
Preshy went on to star in a number of stock, touring and Broadway productions, including in as 'Daisy Mae' in "Li'l Abner," 'Katie,' in "Calamity Jane," and roles in "Oklahoma!," "Most Happy Fella" and "Brigadoon." Her most notable performance was as 'Philia' in the 1962 original Broadway production of "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum," with Zero Mostel, which ran for over 900 performances.
In 1965, Preshy fell in love with industrial actor and Ford Motor Company spokesman Marc Reyna. They were married in 1966 and later relocated to Los Angeles, both continuing their careers there. After the birth of their daughter, Kristin Nell, in 1973, Preshy largely retired from acting to devote herself to motherhood. In the 1990s, Preshy returned to teaching, including in special education, at Dixie Canyon Elementary.
Preshy was a devoutly religious Lutheran and a member of her beloved Sherman Oaks Lutheran Church for close to 40 years, where she sang in the choir for many years, and was a member of the Mary Martha Guild and Caregivers. She always had a friendly word and cheerful smile for everyone, and truly cared about everyone she knew and loved.
Preshy is survived by her daughter, Kristin Nell, her grandson, Joseph Peter ("Joe Joe"), her stepsons Gregory and Peter, her sisters Margery and Cookie, and numerous nieces and nephews. Her memorial service will take place at Sherman Oaks Lutheran Church on July 11, 2015 at 1:00 p.m. Burial will be private; interment will be at Pierce Brothers Valhalla in North Hollywood.
MARKER, Preshy (Esther Stomme Reyna)
Born: 8/26/1932, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.
Died: 7/?/2015, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Preshy Marker’s westerns – actress:
Death Valley Days (TV) – 1959 (Kathy Mulqueen)