June 3, 1931 - Dec. 19, 2020
NILES, MI - MaryLou was born June 3, 1931 on her family's Bee and Tobacco farm in southern Missouri, which they lost later due to the Depression. The family migrated up here to Benton Harbor, Michigan where she grew up at the City of Mary, an affiliate of the House of David, a self-sustaining community that thrived during the Depression and war years, and where the Honnicutt family had 400 beehives. She left the commune after graduating from Stevensville High School.
She always had a big heart and much compassion for children and animals in need, and for the Native American Indians. She retired from the University of Notre Dame where she was employed for 19 years as the administrative assistant for the director of the student health services.
MaryLou is preceded in death by her husband of 42 years, Richard H. Abbott; her mother, Eva Honnicutt Barnard; and sister, Maxine Tindle.
She is survived by her children, Bill Sykes, Rebecca Sykes Smythe, Carolyn Sykes Moyer, Kathryn Gitchell (Gary), Paul Edward Sykes (Cynthia), and her stepchildren, Gina Abbott and Donna Silber; her grandchildren, Natasha Sykes Rawson, Michael Sykes, Emily Smythe, Christopher Moyer, Thomas Rissman, Scarlett Cabanaw, Heidi Silber, and Randy Silber; and her great-grandchildren, Baya Rawson, Kaylee Moyer, Morgan Cabanaw, Lou Rissman, James Rissman, Luke Silber, and Conner Silber.
Funeral arrangements are pending.
Published in South Bend Tribune on Dec. 26, 2020.