Marilyn Kay Alter

Marilyn Kay (Mullian) Alter, 83, of Oak Brook, formerly of Hinsdale, passed away Aug. 20, 2020.

She was born in Cleveland in 1937 to the Stephen J. and Catherine Mullian.

She attended Miami of Ohio where she was part of the Pi Beta Phi sorority. After she met David Alter, the two married and moved to Chicago where she resided since 1958.

Marilyn dedicated her life to her husband, children and grandchildren. She divided the last 30 years between Chicago and Scottsdale, Ariz., where she volunteered at hospitals in her free time. Other volunteer work Marilyn was involved with included learning Braille and translating books for the blind library of Chicago. Marilyn also worked with adult English language learners and other charities.

Marilyn’s true passion was travel and she managed to see much of the world with her husband, but after he passed she continued her journeys with her grandchildren. Having been in many school plays as a high school student, she continued her love for theater and musicals throughout her life. Most evenings, Marilyn could be seen with a mystery or WWII book in her lap. She truly was a lifelong learner of all things including history, politics and the arts. Marilyn loved college football, basketball, the Chicago Bears and most of all the Chicago Cubs. She will be greatly missed.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 49 years, David Lee Alter.

She is survived by her children, Stephen J. (Lisa), David Scott (Laura), Daniel C. (Laura), Thomas W. (Laura) and Katharine M. (Mark Rosenberg) Alter; her grandchildren, Christopher (Brittany) Alter, Charles (Nikki) Alter, Catherine (Jake Eriksson) Alter, Robert (Annabel Chasney) Alter, David (Sarah) Alter, Jennifer (Drew) Alter Bell, Thomas (Allie) Alter, Marilyn (Morgan Hawthorne) Lauterbach, Ian Lauterbach, Henry Alter, William Alter, Emily Alter and John Alter; her sister, Jane Root; her nephews, Sam, John; and her niece, Ann.

Funeral services and interment are private.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to PAWS Chicago, 1997 N Clybourn Ave, Chicago, IL 60614 (online at; or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital at

Brian Powell Funeral Directors of Hinsdale handled the arrangements.