Mary Elizabeth McElyea Clare, age 90, of Kansas City, Mo., formerly of Oran, Mo., passed away Monday, March 30, 2009 at Windsor Estates in Camdenton, Mo.
She was born July 23, 1918 in Piggott , Ark., a daughter to Aaron and Bertha (Williams) Hollingsworth.
Mary grew up in the mining community of Colp, Ill., where her father was a carpenter for Madison Coal Company and later near Piggott, where her father and mother owned a farm. She graduated from Piggott High School .
Mary was united in marriage, June, 1942 to Charles W. McElyea, who preceded her in death in 1975. She then married H.F. (Jim) Clare in 1982, who also preceded her in death in 2004.
Mary graduated from Arkansas State Teachers College and the University of Missouri with a degree in Elementary Education. She taught fifth grade and special education classes in Senath, Eminence, Campbell and Mountain Grove, Mo., until her retirement in 1981. Mary was a member of the Order of the Eastern Star for 72 years and Past Worthy Matron; Missouri Retired Teachers Association and was a member of the United Methodist Church of Oran.
Mary loved laughter and always had a funny story to tell. As her family lovingly reflects, three words that sum up the life of Mary McElyea Clare; Grace, Laughter and Pearls.
Mary is survived by three sons and one daughter, Charles E. McElyea and wife, Nancy, of Camdenton, Mo., Martha E. McElyea, of Kansas City, Mo., Robert W. McElyea, of St. Louis, Mo., and Paul A. McElyea and wife, Judy, of Ste. Genevieve, Mo.; grandchildren, Christopher McElyea and wife, Courtney, Brian McElyea, Aaron McElyea and wife, Mel, and Caleb McElyea and wife, Erika, and great-grandchildren, Bailey, Tommy, Maggie, Emily, Andrew, Brianna and Caden.
Eastern Star Service will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, April 4, 2009, followed by funeral services at Landess Funeral Home in Campbell, Mo.
The family will receive friends for visitation from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., prior to services at the funeral home.
Burial will follow in the Woodlawn Cemetery at Campbell.
Memorial donations are suggested to: The Research Foundation, 2316 E. Meyer Blvd., Kansas City , MO 64132 Nursing Scholarship Fund.
Condolences may be forwarded to the family at www.hedgesscottfuneralhomes.com .
Arrangements have been placed under the care of Hedges-Scott Funeral Home in Camdenton, Mo.