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Mary Alice Hawkins

1931 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Mary Alice Hawkins Obituary
August 13, 1931 - February 6, 2017 Mary Alice Zalesny Hawkins - 86, of Pacific Palisades, California, died February 6, 2017. Mary Alice, as she was always called, was born in Cleveland, Ohio, August 13, 1931 to Helen Alice Zalesny and Stanley Joseph Zalesny. It was a loving Polish Family. She was exceptionally bright with a welcoming personality that drew people to her. She had great love for family, especially her brother Arthur, who died young, and her sister Lydia Uhrik, deceased. She attended a Catholic Girls High School in Los Angeles where she was elected Senior Class President. She was awarded a scholarship to Mount St. Mary's University in Brentwood. Her course of studies led her to become a talented and much loved Elementary School Teacher. She earned her Master's Degree from USC. In 1967 Mary Alice became the youngest Elementary School Principal in the Los Angeles School District. After several years at different Elementary Schools throughout Los Angeles she became the Principal at Warner Ave. School in Westwood. She loved the school and delighted in her role. Many students and parents remembered her fondly for years afterwards. She retired from the School District at the age of 55 after marrying Robert Hawkins, a High School Vice-Principal, "the love of her life". Mary Alice and Robert took up residence in Rancho Santa Fe for several years before they eventually moved to The Pacific Palisades. She loved to travel. Mary Alice traveled to Europe, Asia and Africa. She started by reading how to see Europe on five dollars a day. She did just that on her first trip. She and Robert fell in love with England and returned often to visit many new-found friends. Her friendships with her High School and College friends and a large list of Elementary School Teachers and Principals was maintained and nourished over her entire life. She was admired, beloved, and will be missed by all and especially her family. As one of her Nieces wrote; "Today I lost my amazing Aunt Mary Alice. She was a clever, lovely, generous, impeccable lady. To me she was fine wine, charm, beautiful broaches, wit, strength, perfect hair, generosity, style and grace. She believed adamantly in education and would laugh out loud at a good joke. Her hugs were warm and her smile was effervescent. I am so glad she lived a long life that included family, friends and love. It inspires me to do the same.". Mary Alice Hawkins is survived by her brothers Stanley and James Zalesny, their wives Renee and Michele, her Nephews Geoffrey Uhrik, Gary Uhrik, and James Uhrik, Niece Jeanne Marie West; Nephew Adam Zalesny, Niece Juleen Woods, Nephew James Zalesny and Nieces Renee Burns, and Nicole Ison. Her memory will continue in their lives and the memories of her fourteen great-nieces and nephews, three great-great nieces and nephews, and her lifelong friends, Luanna and Stella Castellucci, and her dear companion Kenneth Friedman. A Memorial Mass and Celebration of Life Gathering are being arranged for later this month. Please send any donations to the Mt. St. Mary's University Music Department in lieu of flowers.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Mar. 5, 2017
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