That's sad news. Not only are the lever actions made by this company venerated by firearms enthusiasts, the bolt action and semi-auto .22's have stood the test of time. My first rifle, a Marlin bolt action .22, held HUGE amounts of any type of .22 ammo in it's tube magazine, and I've shot it so many times that it's like an old friend.
I also have a scoped Marlin lever action 30-30 rifle. If ever there was "the standard" for Texas deer rifles, this gun has to be in the top five contenders. Almost every deer hunter I know has one of these in their arsenal, as well as lots of folks who don't hunt much anymore but kept our old guns.
Both Marlins were from my Father, who really loved their construction and reliability.
The funny thing is that if one of the reasons their sales are down is that folks are buying assault type rifles, the Marlin .22 is really a far better survival rifle in some aspects. It may lack the knock down power of a .308 or even a .223 but you can buy a ton of ammo for it for very little money and the lack of recoil means multiple shots can be landed in a target area in relatively quick time.
Maybe some good American will buy them. Surely there is some mega-millionaire/billionaire out there with some history with these fine guns. A new marketing strategy, some new r&d for some new models WHILE keeping the historical standards.