Mary Ann Frick (Batdorf) was born and raised in West Reading, Pa, the daughter of Jonathan and Elsie (Lechner) Batdorf, and sister to David, Barbara and Christine. She was known as Mandy, a nickname given to her by her brother. At West Reading High School, she excelled as the president of the Dramatics Club where she was known for her good-natured disposition, constant stream of chatter, and outstanding soprano voice. The “spark plug” of the senior class, she had a magnetic personality, an irresistible smile and an ability to win over any room. Her dreams were of the stage, an acting career for which she was so perfectly suited. It was decided, however, that a teacher’s life would be more practical, so she set off for Kutztown State Teacher’s College. In 1951, she married and had three children, and they made their home in West Reading. For some of that time, she enjoyed having her grandfather, Harry, live with them. Approximately a decade later, she remarried and moved to Phoenix, AZ, where she had four more children, and loved recounting the elevated temperatures at which they were born. The days were hot and the work was hard and she missed her family back east, particularly her beloved mother. So in 1966, the family returned to Reading and moved into a large row home behind a funeral home where her kids spent many summer nights playing ghost in the graveyard in the parking lot. Tragedy struck in 1967 with the sudden death of her mother, a sadness Mandy bore for the rest of her life. In 1970, she married a final time and spent the next dozen years living in Florida – Jacksonville, Cocoa Beach and Satellite Beach. During this time, she put her musical skills to work, teaching piano full-time and hosting lavish annual recitals to celebrate their progress. She loved her students and they returned the sentiment, often popping up years or decades later to let her know what a difference she made in their lives. When not teaching piano, she loved playing it. Her favorite song was Night and Day, which she played magnificently. Mandy was never one to tell a joke, but had an engaging and silly humor that always made her laugh. She was an excellent bridge player whose name often appeared in the local papers for her “victories.” She loved books, shopping, double-features at the movie theater, animals and travel. In 2006, she lost her husband Harry, and three years later restarted her life in Long Island, NY, where she enjoyed the company of a good friend until the diagnosis of Alzheimers. Exceedingly generous with all she had, and a woman of untold optimism, she suffered the disease with her telltale buoyant nature. She was deeply loved and will be missed. She is survived by two sisters, Barbara Sutton and Christine Burger, seven children, Taylor Guerin, Jon Guerin, Cindy Guerin, Nancy Frick (Heim) Martin Heim, Edward Heim and Daniel Heim, and 8 grandchildren. Memorial Service will be announced at a later date. Arrangements entrusted to John P. Feeney Funeral Home, Inc. 625 N. 4th Street at Centre Ave., Reading, PA 19601, 610-372-4160. Obituary and condolences at www.johnpfeeney.com.
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Published in Reading Eagle from May 23 to May 24, 2020.