Mary Louise (Rardin) Gross-Halverson passed away on April 6, 2014 at the age of 96. Mary was born in Toledo, Ohio to Edwin and Olive (Johnson) Rardin on June 25, 1917. She married LaVern George Gross on October 18, 1941 in Sylvania, Ohio, and shared 52 years discovering the meaning of family and life with him.
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The hallmarks of Mary's life were faith, kindness and compassion. She was a beautiful woman, who brought peace and love to all who knew her. Mary's love of God was her passion and her delight, and her faith guided her and comforted her to her very last breath.
Mary had great love for her children, always holding them close to her heart even as they grew and moved far and wide. She was a wonderful mother and grandmother, and she always made time to lift up her children and grandchildren in prayer as they navigated through life. She was a strong, wise and loving matriarch.
Mary loved nature, and was a gifted gardener. She and her husband LaVern brought natural beauty to others through their landscaping and gardening business, and in their retirement continued to invest their time and their hearts into creating beautiful gardens for the enjoyment of others. Even as Mary lost her eyesight, she still continued to plant gardens that delighted the eyes of others.
The natural beauty of Colorado inspired Mary and LaVern to move from Ohio to Calhan, Colorado in 1950. In 1957 they moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado, where they raised their children to adulthood. Upon retirement, Mary and LaVern spent several happy years in Buena Vista, Colorado. LaVern passed away on January 29, 1993, and on July 9, 1994 Mary wed Noel Willard Halverson in Buena Vista, Colorado. Noel and Mary shared 16 years of joy, happiness and peace with one another. In 2010 Mary returned to the area of her Colorado beginnings, moving to The Good Samaritan Center in Simla, Colorado.
Mary is survived by two sisters, Janie (Rardin) Stamm, and Joyce (Rardin) Asam, her six children, Mildred and Delmer Manyik, Avelyn and Richard Ullom, Margaret Barnard, Marie and Rick Doneghue, John and Verna Gross, and Peter and Nancy Gross. She is also survived by 17 grandchildren, 23 great grandchildren, and 3 great-great grandchildren.
A viewing will be held between 9:30 and 10:30 at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in Calhan, Colorado on Friday, April 11, 2014 with services to follow at 10:30 am. A private graveside service will be held at Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Colorado Springs.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Good Samaritan Center in Simla, Colorado, which provided Mary with wonderful love, care and comfort in her final years.
Published in The Gazette on Apr. 10, 2014