Obituary: Sharon Ann McNott

Beloved great-grandmother, animal lover, woman of faith

Sharon Ann McNott, 82, died unexpectedly but peacefully on November 29 at her home in Montgomery Village, Maryland. She was born January 8 1939, and was raised in Des Moines, Iowa. She was also a longtime resident of Claremont and East Lansing, Michigan.

Known for her radiant joy and keen sense of humor, Sharon graduated from Teddy Roosevelt High School in Des Moines, where she was active in dance and swimming before attending Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri.

Her father, Bert Stolpe, was an advertising executive with the Des Moines Register and other publications, and her mother, Unell, was a well-known soloist.

She briefly pursued acting before eloping to Las Vegas with the love of her life, the brother of a church friend and musician, Marshall McNott. Despite having dated for only a few weeks, the two remained married for more than 61 years.

And just as she turned down a role in an upcoming Doris Day film in order to devote herself to marriage and motherhood, Marshall chose similarly, turning down offers to continue touring as a lead trumpet player with the top big bands of the 1950s in exchange for a stable family life and successful career running various nonprofits, including the Los Angeles Mission.

She was a woman of great faith, whose spiritual journey included Christian Science (whose teachings were a lifelong support to her), the Baptist church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and many years as a Presbyterian. Her doctors were continually amazed at how a 25-year “brittle diabetic” such as herself continued to enjoy near-perfect eyesight/organ health, something she attributed to daily spiritual study.

She also blessed the lives of prison inmates through letter exchanges and in-person visits with her husband.

She loved animals and was the “favorite chef” for her backyard squirrels, who’d literally stand at attention until she would bring them something to eat in all kinds of weather.
An avid reader, she spent countless hours studying books on American history and Native Americans.

She has now been reunited with her parents and son Michael, who died at the tender age of five, and continues to live on through her beloved husband Marshall; daughter Tamara Lazarev; son David McNott; four grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren, with one more on the way.

“She was a beautiful woman who will be greatly missed,” her family shared.

If you would like to contact Marshall McNott, please visit his Facebook page at



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