Poland - Mary Lou Jaric, 91, passed away, Saturday morning, June 17, 2023, at Shepherd of the Valley in Poland.
Mary Lou was born December 3, 1931 in Youngstown, Ohio, a daughter of Stephen and Mary Pavlov Ekoniak.
Raised in Struthers, Mary Lou was a graduate of Struthers High School, Class of 1950, and was proud of her hometown and upbringing. Her first job was a secretary for Ohlin Lumber in New Middletown. For the majority of her career, Mary Lou worked for JCPenney in their personnel department and later advertising department, retiring after 20 years of dedicated service.
On October 29, 1955, Mary Lou married Daniel F. Jaric, and they were blessed with nearly 52 years of marriage, until his passing on July 5, 2007. Together, they built a beautiful home and life in Poland, where they raised their son and daughter, and later welcomed the addition of two grandchildren. Nothing brought more joy and smiles to Mary Lou than her title and role as "Nana." She was ever present for all of their extracurricular activities, driving them to their various lessons, and teaching them to cook and bake her special family recipes.
Through the years, Mary Lou attended St. Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, Holy Family Parish, and St.Theresa Monastery. She was a member of the Struthers VFW Ladies Auxiliary and was active with the Cub Scouts and Bluebirds when her children were young.
In her free time, she enjoyed pastel painting, walking, water aerobics at the YMCA, caring for her plants, watching golf and Professional Bull Riding on television, and drives through Mill Creek Park, shopping trips, and lunch dates with her daughter. While living at Shepherd of the Valley Assisted Living, she loved participating in the activities, playing bingo, putting together jigsaw puzzles, and making arts and crafts. Mary Lou also enjoyed cheering for the Steelers and the Vikings, which was her son's favorite team.
Part of the greatest generation, Mary Lou will be lovingly remembered for her positive attitude and wonderful outlook on life.
She leaves to carry on her memory, her children, Daniel M. (Toni) Jaric of New Springfield and Mary Lisa Jaric of Austintown; brother, Stephen "Don" (Andrea) Ekoniak of Struthers; grandchildren, Kacie Leigh Jaric of Poland and Dean Matthew Jaric of New Springfield; her brother-in-law, John Curea of Boardman; and a host of extended family and friends.
In addition to her parents and husband, Mary Lou was preceded in death by her sister and best friend, Patricia Curea.
Family and friends will be received on Thursday from 5-7 p.m. at the Cunningham-Becker Funeral Home, 270 N. Main St., Poland. A prayer service will be held on Friday at 10:30 a.m. at the funeral home, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 11 a.m. at St. Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, with Fr. Philip Rogers officiating. Interment will be at St. John the Baptist Catholic Cemetery.
The family would like to thank the entire staff of Shepherd of the Valley for their wonderful care and kindness through the years and allowing Mary Lou to be able to call Shepherd of the Valley her home. And a special thank you to Crossroads Hospice for their tender care and for being there every step of the way on Mary Lou's journey to Heaven.
Memorial tributes may take the form of contributions in Mary Lou's name to Shepherd's Foundation, 5525 Silica Rd., Austintown, OH 44515, or Crossroads Hospice, 3743 Boettler Oaks Dr., Suite E, Green, OH 44685.
Please visit www.beckerobits.com to share memories and condolences with the family.