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Marguerite Leng died peacefully Sunday, May 19, 2019, at the age of 92 surrounded by members of her loving family. Marguerite was born on Sept. 25, 1926, in St. Albert, Alberta, Canada, daughter of Marie and Joseph Lambert. She became an accomplished scientist with expertise in pesticide regulatory affairs and food safety evaluation. She was employed by the Dow Chemical Co. for 35 years. In her heyday, Marguerite was a force to be reckoned with. Joining Dow in 1956, she was feisty, a fighter, a brilliant scientist, and one of the very first to pave the way for other women entering science and engineering in an exclusively male-dominated field at that time. Marguerite created several sensitive methods of detecting minute quantities of pesticides in food, dairy and other products. She leaves an amazing legacy with her career at Dow Chemical, which included working with the EPA, agencies of the United Nations, and the World Health Organization. She authored several books and was fluent in French and multiple other languages.


Marguerite received her bachelor’s degree in Honours Chemistry at the University of Alberta, her master’s degree in chemistry at the University of Saskatchewan, and her Ph.D. in biochemistry at Purdue University. It was at Purdue that Marguerite met and married another Canadian Ph.D. student, Douglas Leng, and they were married on June 18, 1955, in Kitchener, Ontario. Together, they juggled demanding careers, raising a family, and shared many interests and hobbies. As avid sailors, she and Doug would spend many weeks every summer with their children and friends sailing the North Channel, most summers sailing Panacea, their 37-foot sloop. They also shared a love of hockey – supported their sons in their hockey careers — and especially enjoyed watching NHL hockey. True to her Canadian roots, Marguerite also was an accomplished curler, and she and Doug were one of the founders of the Midland Curling Club, now the Greater Midland Curling Center. They both were inducted into the Midland County Sports Hall of Fame in 2010. They were proud to become American citizens after 50 years. They enjoyed many trips to Europe, as well as Alaska and around the Great Lakes

by cruise ship.


Surviving in addition to her husband Douglas of 63 years are their three children, Ron (Tricia) Leng of Midland; Janet (Craig) Tangi of Dublin, Ohio; and Doug Leng of Richland, Michigan.


Marguerite will be dearly missed by many including her nine grandchildren, Ryan of Phoenix, Arizona; Katy and Ray Welker of Ann Arbor; Jessica and Zac Sturgeon of Grand Rapids; Michael Dumas of Detroit, Michigan; Phillip Dumas of Columbus, Ohio; Craig of Greeneville, Tennessee; Kristin of Hoboken, NJ; Taylor and Kirk Lowe of Greeneville, Tennessee; and Kelsey of Knoxville, Tennessee.


Marguerite was predeceased by her parents, and brothers Marcel Lambert and Lucien Lambert.


The family would like to thank Helping Hand caregivers Julie Hill and Zander Holms for their kind care given to Marguerite.


A Memorial Visitation will be held from 4:00 to 6:00 pm on Tuesday, May 28, 2019 at Smith-Miner Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, those planning an expression of sympathy are asked to the Salvation Army or Red Cross of Midland.

On Line condolences may be left at smithminer.com






Condolence Messages

  1. Suzanne Kresta

    22 May 2019 2 years ago

    My warm thoughts to all of you. I met Maggie in 1991, just before I became an academic and just weeks after her retirement. She was a terrific role model and an inspiration – as Doug continues to be. You made a lovely and loving, exceptional, professional couple – decades before this became an accepted possibility. I am so grateful to hear that Maggie is now free once again to be her full self, as the last time I was able to visit it was clear that she was losing ground. Wishing all of you the comfort of many good memories of the active and busy life you shared so beautifully in her obituary.

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