Mary Ellen TenEyck, 70, of Idaho Falls, passed away Saturday, May 3, 2014, at the University of Utah Hospital in Salt Lake City following complications from surgery.
Mary Ellen was born Dec. 14, 1943, in McKeesport, Pa. Her parents were Joseph Anthony Marzaloes and Geral- dine Ruth Hillegass Marzaloes. She had three siblings: Joseph Marzaloes of St. Louis, Jeffery Marzaloes of Pittsburgh and William "Bill" Marzaloes. Her father and brother, Bill, preceded her in death.
Following graduation from high school, she became a senior professional secretary for G. C. Murphy Inc., and later as private secretary for the President of Brickman Engineering in Pittsburgh.
On Oct. 10, 1970, she married Michael B. TenEyck (Mike) in Idaho Falls and they had two boys, Douglas and Kevin of Idaho Falls. Mary Ellen has three grandchildren, Colby, Logan and Charlotte.
Mary Ellen was active in the community. In the early years of the Idaho Falls Ski Club, she served as secretary. She was also president of the Mothers of Our Coaches Helpers (MOOCH) for the Idaho Falls Youth Hockey Association (IFYHA). During this period, she was active in the fundraising for the building of the original arena's upgrades to artificial ice at the Joe Marmo and Wayne Lehto Ice Hockey Arena at Tautphaus Park. She designed the original logo and pin for the president of IFYHA, the late Wayne K. Lehto. She was active in the Idaho Falls Woman's Catholic League and took on various positions of leadership, one being co-chairing the fashion show.
After her boys grew up, she became an active volunteer at Holy Rosary Elementary School, and later became a part-time secretary at that school until 2000.
In her personal life, she was a passionate mother and grandmother. Her warmth and teaching of basic human skills and values of dignity did not end at home. She freely taught these lessons of life to her children's friends and neighborhood kids.
Doug's and Kevin's friends were welcomed to our home and all entered without knocking at the door as they went to the refrigerator. Each child had their own drinking glass, which contained their name that was elegantly identified in calligraphy done by Mary Ellen. Many of her boys' friends to this day call Mary Ellen their second mother.
Her excellent cooking did not stop with her own cooking; she taught her boys and neighborhood kids the skills of cooking. Her gift wrapping of birthday and Christmas gifts was second to none. Mary Ellen TenEyck was the original Martha Stewart! Mary Ellen enjoyed camping, which spanned her entire married life. When the boys were growing up, she was actively teaching them good camp etiquette, and of course, when her boys got older, their friends joined us. One Memorial Day weekend in Island Park, she and her husband and another couple were using six Dutch oven kettles feeding an additional 15 teenage boy -- all football players, so one does not have to guess how much cooking was done! In retirement, she and her husband, Mike, bought a condo in Island Park. There, she enjoyed the well deserved serenity, tranquility and peace of this restful mountain setting. She radiated these same attributes right up to the end of her life.
There exists another part of Mary Ellen's life, which is personal, but it is time to share to all. In 1989, she was allowed extended life as a recipient of a transplanted kidney from her brother, Bill. Years later, she was blessed with a second transplanted kidney. These gifts to her were truly the most benevolent gifts of love, and for a quarter of a century, allowed Mary Ellen to see her boys graduate from high school and college, attend their weddings and enjoy her grandchildren. Her husband Mike believes she reciprocated in the true meaning of love by touching and loving everyone she knew with this same unconditional love.
Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Friday, May 9, at Christ the King Catholic Church, 1690 E. 17th St. in Idaho Falls, with Deacon Christopher Reilly officiating. The family will visit with friends from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Thursday at Wood Funeral Home East Side, 963 S. Ammon Road, and from 10 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Friday prior to services at the church.
In lieu of flowers, her family suggests donations to the Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD) Foundation, P.O. Box 871847, Kansas City, MO 64187.
Condolences may be sent to the family online at www.woodfuneralhome.com.