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Online Obituaries

Mary Elizabeth Rowan

November 08, 1926 - May 04, 2017

Mary Elizabeth Rowan, a resident of Villa St. Benedict in Lisle, IL, and former resident of Warren, MI, died peacefully on Thursday, May 4, 2017 at the age of 90. 

Elizabeth was born on November 8, 1926 in Detroit, MI, daughter of the late John and Mary Keppinger, and the adored little sister of Johnny. Although German was spoken at home, Elizabeth developed a love of the English language. Nurtured by the nuns at Nativity Commercial High School, she perfected her skills and wrote many stories and plays. She was an avid reader, and kept the family abreast of newly published biographies and works of fiction. Most stories in Reader’s Digest Condensed Books were particular favorites. Her children were delighted and inspired when she took on the role of Great Books leader in their school. 

Elizabeth drew her strength from her husband of 66 years, Gerry. She was first and foremost his wife. Her loving attention and dedication to him modeled all the beauty of a marriage to her four children, Barb (Terry), Sue (Charlie), Tricia (Chris) and the late Gerald Jr. 

Elizabeth held several secretarial positions prior to her marriage and motherhood. First at Super Tool, then at Prudential Insurance in Detroit MI and finally at Visual Electronics working for her brother Johnny. Years later, she returned to the workforce to help finance her children’s education, and had an enjoyable 2nd career at the Answering Service, Inc. based in Birmingham, MI. 

Elizabeth loved animals and they loved her. She held an almost mystical magnetism with all pets. In a group, she was always the first to be greeted, and whenever in need they came straight to her. Even ones with fearful tendencies felt comfort in her presence, St. Francis of Assisi was a favorite saint of hers. 

Elizabeth is survived by her three daughters, four grandchildren, Gerry, Leah, Matt & Mike and her five beloved great grandchildren Maya, Madeline, Charles Joseph, Thomas and Aaron.

The family would like to thank the staff of Villa St. Benedict and the staff of Capital Hospice for their loving care.

Funeral Information

Memorial Visitation Wednesday, May 17, 2017, 10:00-11:00 AM at Sacred Heart Monastery Chapel at Villa St. Benedict, 1920 Maple Ave., Lisle.   

A Mass of Christian Burial will follow Wednesday, 11:00 AM at Sacred Heart Monastery Chapel.  

Interment: Private.

Arrangements by Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Naperville.

For more information, please call (630) 355-0213.

Donations Information

Memorials maybe sent to St. Labre Indian School, Ashland, MT 59004, (406) 784-4500, donorrelations@stlabre.org or Villa St. Benedict Foundation, 1920 Maple Ave., Lisle, IL 60532, (630) 852-0345, www.villastben.org

Donations Links:

Villa St. Benedict Foundation
St. Labre Indian School

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