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"Do ordinary things with extraordinary love." ~ Mother Teresa
That was our mom Mary Louise Thomas (aka "Doey", Mary Lou, and Lou) that was her, ever present, unwavering, fiercely protective, and totally devoted to the health and happiness of a husband (Richard) and five kids: Melinda, Richard Jr., Tracy, Tim, and Kiely.
Were blessed this ordinary woman used extraordinary love to guide us and enrich our lives. Shell be sadly missed, but the playbook she leaves behind will keep us all "on task" and doing the right things.
It was a great run for 93 years, May 8, 1928 March 21, that began in Jefferson City, Missouri. Mom was the first daughter and second child born to David and Beatrice (Kiely) Witcher. With big brother James David (JD), she was soon joined by sister and best friend Bea (Felling) before the family relocated to Kansas City, Missouri. A second brother and final child, William Keith (Billy), came aboard nearly 18 years later to complete this iteration of the Witcher clan.
A proud and life-long supporter of Catholic schools, Mary Lou attended St. James Grade School and graduated with honors from Lillis High School. These were educational and spiritual platforms that helped to form her faith and the compassion she passed along to all of us and to all with whom she interacted. And the grammar skills she acquired during these years wow. Every time someone misuses "I" and/or "me" in speech or print, my eyes and ears itch and I think of my favorite grammarian. And spiritually, Mom had a great affinity in her Catholic faith for the Virgin Mary and she often recited the "Memorare" (remember) as a night time prayer sometimes even in Latin!
Mom was a working mom before many were sometimes working double shifts at night at Baptist Memorial Hospital where for thirty years she made sure "her small businesses" got paid fairly and on time, as accounts payable supervisor and assistant office manager.
Lou loved her games card games, floor games, yard games, word games you name it playing with all of us through the years, but especially with her grandchildren and great grandchildren. She was a keen competitor, but strangely enough we noticed, she rarely seemed to win. She had a habit of always helping her "opponent" understand and master whatever game was in play. I asked her once why she never won. "No, I win every time just seeing the smiles, the excitement and sense of accomplishment on those faces. Thats winning for me."
(Writers note: Have you ever played with a "paddle ball", the wooden paddle with a rubber ball attached with an elastic string? Mom was the best I ever saw with that thing. She could keep the ball bouncing off the paddle, seemingly, as long as she wanted to. And "Jax", theres another one!)
And speaking of kids, grands and greats, wed be in trouble if we didnt completely and accurately list Dad, and all of their names and related details here.
Richard Francis Thomas (deceased 2018) and Mom were married for over 60 years and this is their proudest work: Melinda Sue Roberts (Michael), Richard Francis Thomas, Jr. (Cathie), Tracy Ann Mendenhall (Jim), Timothy David Thomas (Tracie), Bridget Kiely Tanner (Dan).
Grands: Lauren Ann Massey (Rob), Ryan Michael Roberts, Bradley Joseph Thomas (Jessie), Molly Kathleen Mendenhall-Savage (Jason), Richard Francis Thomas III (Maggie), Amanda Katherine Shortino (Ryan), Quinn Thomas Tanner, Micah Thomas Tanner, Spenser Chase Thomas.
And later, the great grands who became the bright, shining moments for Moms final days: Lauren and Robs squad, Niamh, Mairead, and Nora; Brad and Jessies crew, Cole and Fletcher; Trey and Maggies team, Kate and Annie; Mandy and Ryans duo, Salvatore and Gus; and Molly and Jasons new bundle of joy, Samantha.
Mom, all you could do for all of us, was all you did, and all you did was enough!
The family respectfully requests no flowers but encourages donations to The National Ataxia Foundation, ataxia.org, or The National Kidney Foundation, kidney.org.
SERVICES Visitation & Rosary
Friday, April 1, 2022 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Muehlebach Funeral Care 6800 Troost Avenue Kansas City, Missouri 64131
Friday, April 1, 2022 11:30 AM
Mount Olivet Cemetery 7601 Blue Ridge Blvd Kansas City, Missouri 64138
Celebration of Life
Friday, April 1, 2022 12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Windy City Event Space 13170 State Line Rd. Leawood, Kansas 66209
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