TRAVERSE CITY — Leona Mae Mack passed away peacefully on Jan. 3, 2013, at Ritter's Adult Living Center. She was born to Wesley and Della Thompson 86 years ago and was the eldest of seven siblings.
Lee's last career endeavor was working in the fine jewelry department at Macy's until her retirement at the age of 76.
She was independent, always coiffed and was never without her jewelry! She was an avid shopper and had QVC on her speed dial!
Lee married Gerald Mack on May 11, 1946, after his honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy, and they raised three children together, Karen, Dennis and Dean.
When they lived on Boughey Hill the neighborhood adults and kids went on numerous adventures together and every summer, up until a few years ago, they all gathered for the annual Boughey Hill reunion at the cottage of Nan Wares. Lee was known in the neighborhood as a great baker and cook, and her home was often full of kids other than her own! Her jello cookies, cinnamon rolls and strawberry pies were just a few favorites.
She lived in her home until a series of strokes induced a diagnosis of dementia and an assisted living arrangement was necessary. She was very happy at Ritter's and loved to sit out in the swing in the sunshine and fresh air. Before her health made such adventures impossible, her friend Marion Hoxie would pick her up and they'd 'do lunch' and go shopping for deals.
Lee is survived by her daughter, Karen (Bob) Straitiff, of The Villages in Florida; her son, Dean (Diana) Mack, of Traverse City; her daughter-in-law, Janice Mack, of Traverse City; six grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald in 1990; and her son, Dennis in 2011.
We wish to sincerely thank the staff at Ritter's whose care and affection during the four years Lee lived there allowed her to feel she was home. We also wish to thank Dr. Lorraine Nall and Sandy for their caring administering to Lee's medical needs, Reynolds-Jonkhoff for their guidance and support and Munson Hospice, especially Jonathan Basler, Lee's hospice nurse, for his care and patient answering to any and all questions we had.
Lee will be remembered as a woman whose big smile could light up the room and as a woman who spoke her mind and with whom you always knew where you stood. She is missed.
As Lee requested, cremation has taken place. A memorial visitation will take place from 5 until 7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 7, at The Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home.
Memorial contributions may be directed to Munson Hospice, c/o Munson Healthcare Regional Foundation, 210 Beaumont Place, Traverse City, MI 49684 (online at www.munsonhealthcare.org), or to a charity of your choice.
Please share memories of Lee with her family by way of her online guestbook and tribute page at www.reynolds-jonkhoff.com.
The family is being served by Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home and Cremation Services.