Margaret Ann Ford Eister died at home on Thursday, June 5, due to advanced ovarian cancer. Eister was born in Washington, D.C. on March 18, 1927 to Edward F. Liston and Katherine F. Liston. She lived with her parents in the Aurora Hills area of Arlington until their divorce and then moved to New York City where her mother opened an interior-decorating firm.
Her mother married Harvard professor John Ford who adopted her. The Fords resided in Boston and Lincoln, Mass. She graduated from the Dana Hall School for Girls in Wellesley, Mass. and from Radcliff College in Boston with a bachelor's degree in geography.
Margaret Eister returned to Washington, D.C. in 1946 where she worked as an information specialist for the War Department Army Map Service. She met her husband, William A. Eister, at a boarding house where they both resided. They were married July 5, 1948.
She followed her husband to Pennsylvania State University in 1948 where he attended undergraduate school on the G.I. Bill and she had a fellowship for graduate work in geography. She and her husband returned to Northern Virginia in 1952 where she worked for the U.S. Geological Survey for 30 years, until her retirement.
Margaret Eister was a Sunday school teacher and member of the Fairfax Unitarian Church and participated in open housing vigils at various Northern Virginia apartment complexes in the mid-1960s. Following her retirement, she moved to Mt. Jackson, Va., in the Shenandoah Valley, where she was active in the Woodstock Woman's Club, Mt. Jackson Book Club, Mt. Jackson Garden Club and served on the Shenandoah County Democratic Committee. She was a volunteer at the bloodmobile and Mt. Jackson Library.
She was predeceased in 1979 by her husband and by her two stepsons, William Eister, who died in the service in Vietnam in 1968, and, in 1998, by Albert "Jack" Eister of Sunbury, Pa. Her son, Eric Eister, died in 1995.
She is survived by daughter Katherine Eister Fisher of Herndon, step-granddaughter Irene Hardy of Sunbury, Pa., and step-great-grandsons Christopher and Jonathan Hardy of Sunbury, Pa.
Memorial donations can be made to the Herndon Woman's Club, P.O. Box 334, Herndon, Va. 20172. A memorial service will take place at the Vienna Presbyterian Church, 124 Church St., N.E., Vienna, on Sunday, July 22 at 2 p.m. Interment will be at Culpeper National Cemetery.