Marcena Moore, 91, of Philadelphia, whose zest for music and astronomy was equaled only by her love of travel, died Sunday, Dec. 1, of respiratory failure at her home.
Mrs. Moore was the controller of the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia from 1970 to 1996.
Under the council's aegis, she led several trips, which kindled her passion for travel, her family said. Mrs. Moore's travels included visits to all seven continents, including a voyage aboard a Russian icebreaker to the Antarctic.
"It was the last continent she hadn't seen," her son Gregory said. "She bruised some ribs in a rough passage through the Strait of Magellan, but that didn't stop her."
Many of these trips were timed to coincide with astronomical events. She went to Peru to see Halley's Comet; to Mexico, Australia, and the Caribbean to see full solar eclipses; to Spain to see the Leonid meteor showers; and back to the Caribbean in 2004 at age 82 to witness the Transit of Venus.
She climbed the Great Wall of China soon after the country was opened to the West, and explored Europe and Asia to learn about different cultures.
Born in Chicago, Mrs. Moore became fascinated by music at an early age. She arranged and composed music for her church as a young adult, and formed a singing group with her siblings called the Idle Sisters, named after their mother, Beulah Idle. The group performed swing and big band music.
But she also loved everything from classical music and opera to the Beatles. She infused each of her nine children with her enthusiasm, and they in turn passed it along to their children.
"She did her best to attend all of the concerts and plays in which her children and grandchildren were involved, showing her love and support," her family said in a statement.
In latter years, the clan would gather to honor Mrs. Moore on her birthday. In honor of her passions, her family cowrote a song about her with Dave Nachmanoff, a guitarist and singer/songwriter from California.
Mrs. Moore married Trevor Wyatt Moore in 1944. He died in 1990.
Surviving, besides her son, are sons Trevor "Dunstan," John, David, and Peter; daughters Marci Ann Paolucci, Veronica, Martha "Liz" Bligan, and Francesca Giansante; 19 grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren.
A viewing starting at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 5, will be followed by an 11 a.m. funeral service at St. John Chrysostom Albanian Orthodox Church, 237 N. 17th St., Philadelphia 19103. Interment is in Valley Forge Memorial Gardens, King of Prussia.
Contributions may be made to the church.