(July 11, 1919 – November 16, 2011)
Mary Lou Farrell was born to Art and Georgia (Smith) Hamilton on July 11, 1919 in Pukwana, South Dakota. She grew up in Mexico, Missouri with a ready smile and a love of dancing, serving on the pep squad throughout high school. Following graduation, she worked as a secretary at the A. P. Green Fire Brick Company and met Jim Farrell, a math and science teacher at Mexico?ÇÖs Missouri Military Academy. They were married for 59 years and she became the mother of Mike (Michaelene), Kathie (Bill Grzesiak), Scott (Mary Kay), Mark (Juli Bergerud), and Mary Jo (Steve Hunst); grandmother of Brian, Colin, David, Georgia, Hilary, Jay, Kristen, Laura, Patrick, Rebecca, Scott, and Tracy; and great-grandmother of Leika and Maura. An only child herself, Mary Lou delighted in having a brother- and sister-in-law, George and Mary Alyce Farrell, and five nephews. Mary Lou and Jim began their married life in Roswell, New Mexico. Following Jim?ÇÖs service during WWII, they lived in Iowa while he earned a doctoral degree (she typed his 650-page dissertation in quadruplicate with carbons) and in Alabama when he was recalled to active military duty. They settled in Big Rapids, Michigan for more than thirty years, where he served at Ferris State College and as mayor. They returned to New Mexico in retirement before moving to Fremont, Ohio to be nearer again to family. Mary Lou was parish secretary at St. Paul Catholic Church in her early years in Big Rapids, a legal assistant after earning her degree at Ferris, and a volunteer with children?ÇÖs reading programs. She loved knitting, needlework and parties, and she and Jim co-wrote a family biography. A lifelong bridge player, Mary Lou continued to attract good cards and win at weekly games into September of this year. She passed away on November 16 in Midland, Michigan at age 92. A Funeral Liturgy will be held at 2:00 pm on Saturday, Nov. 19, 2011 at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, with Father Peter Gaspeny officiating. The family will receive friends at the church on Saturday, from 1:00 pm until the time of the service. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to a veterans?ÇÖ group or to the Jim Farrell Memorial Scholarship Endowment at Ferris State University. Smith-Miner Funeral Home, 2700 W. Wackerly is assisting the family. Online condolences can be given at smithminer.com.