Mary Delaney

Mary Lou Delaney

1926 - 2020

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Obituary of Mary Lou Delaney

Mary Lou Delaney passed away on May 30, 2020 at age 94 at her home in Santa Rosa, CA. She battled COPD and related lung and heart problems resiliently for many years. Mary Lou was born on March 14, 1926 to Wilbur and Isabel Ley and raised in Grand Rapids, MI. She was preceded in death by many years by her parents and siblings Jack, Gerald, Geraldine and Pat. Mary Lou lived on to enjoy a long and exciting life with her husband of 63 years, Jim Delaney. Mary Lou met Jim through his relatives living in Grand Rapids. Courting included trips to the 1948 Olympic Games in London where Jim won the silver medal in the shot put. Mary Lou and Jim got married in 1949 in Grand Rapids. Jim eventually joined Steelcase, the office furniture manufacturer and when the Steelcase growth plans included expansion in California, Mary Lou and Jim accepted an assignment to move west. In 1962, they moved the family to Laguna Niguel, a whole new city being planned south of Laguna Beach. Upon landing, the family was presented with making a go of it in a whole new frontier as the 6th family to settle this upstart community. Mary Lou’s incomparable love of people and ability to make friends kicked into gear and before long, neighbors and new friends abounded with many a party and gathering with all. Mary Lou loved to sing and would find herself in choirs, Sweet Adelines, stage performances or next to anybody’s player piano to join in the making of song. In 1968, Mary Lou along with Jim and son Kevin earned their private pilot’s licenses. She and Jim, along with family & friends, flew for years visiting many wonderful areas throughout the Western United States and Baja California. Eventually, in Jim’s retirement years, Mary Lou and Jim relocated to Santa Rosa and enjoyed a new life closer to Jim’s Northern California roots. They were so happy to be able to spend more time with sons Tim and Joe, their grandchildren and great grandchildren who then lived near them. At the same time adventure was always part of their spirit and the two created a second home for themselves in Sun Valley, Idaho. We are so appreciative of the amazing staff at Villa Capri and Springfield Place, the incredibly caring professionals at Memorial Hospice, including Lisa Laidlaw, and last but certainly not least, her bestie Dorthea who was always at Mary Lou’s side during the last eight years. Mary Lou is survived by her three sons Kevin (Kim), Tim (Leigh Anne), Joe, five grandchildren, Michelle (Todd), Matt (Allison), Chris (Jodi), Blake, Paige, and seven great-grandchildren Connor, Landon, Makenna, Weston, Carolina, Jack and Mary. Due to Covid-19, private family services will be held. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to UCSF Department of Urology or Memorial Hospice-St. Joseph Health Sonoma County.
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