Mary Worland left this life of 95 years on January 18, 2023 beside her family at Kansas City Hospice House. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:15am on Saturday, April 29, 2023 at Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church, followed by burial at Mount Olivet Cemetery. She is survived by her son James Worland and daughter-in-law Julie of Lee’s Summit, grandson Jonathan, nieces and nephews. Mary was predeceased by her husband E. Bernard of 42 years and siblings Julia, Margaret, Andy and George.
The daughter of George and Julianna Kappel, Maria Theresa Kappel was born June 1927 and lived in Kansas City most of her life until recently moving to be with her family in Lee’s Summit. She attended Our Lady of Good Counsel School, graduated from Loretta Academy in 1944, and soon after earned an Associate Degree from Metropolitan Community College. Mary enjoyed the next several years living in Hollywood, CA with both sisters while working full-time and taking every opportunity to experience the greater Los Angeles area and beyond.
Longing for home, she returned to Kansas City and joined Lemoine and Lemoine Ophthalmology and KU Medical Center Dept of Ophthalmology working as a technician for nearly 15 years. During this time, Mary met the love of her life and married “Bernie” in 1959 at Our Lady of Good Counsel Church. Although Mary truly enjoyed her work, patients, and close friendships with colleagues, what she considered her most important job was still ahead, and in 1967 her only son, James, was born. Her decision to stay at home with family followed, as she devoted herself to motherhood.
Mary’s considerable creativity and artistic ability were revealed in interests and part-time work throughout her life. She shared those talents with family, friends, and co-workers at Hallmark Cards and Best of Kansas City. She volunteered her time as an active PTA member, Eagle Scout mother, election poll worker, and with Meals on Wheels. A life-long passion for travel began when Mary and a childhood friend took a three month leave of absence from work in their mid-20s and trekked across Europe on a budget of $2 a day. From countless family vacations to adventures with friends, Mary’s travel took her back to Europe and her Austrian ancestry, to South America, Australia, and all-over North America.
Mary was also devoted to her faith and a practicing Roman Catholic at Our Lady of Good Council Church, and later, Christ the King Church. This shaped her life as a loving wife, mother, grandmother, and aunt. She cherished an amazing circle of friends with some dear friendships forged later in her life and some maintained since elementary school. She was always generous with her time, especially when helping family and friends. While Mary will be sincerely missed, we are incredibly grateful to have had so many years with her. She will ALWAYS be remembered.
Contributions to Kansas City Hospice House & Palliative Care would be appreciated. https://www.kchospice.org/donation/