Mary Elizabeth Ann (Gannon) Massey, 89, passed away peacefully August 22, 2021, in her home at Eskaton Lodge assisted living community in Gold River, California.
She was born on August 23,1931, to Leo James and Deloras Sarah Bridget O’Toole Gannon. Mary was raised on the family farm north of Welton, Iowa. She began school at a one-room schoolhouse near Petersville, graduating from Welton High School in 1949, and Iowa State Teachers College in Cedar Falls in 1957 with a B.A. in Business Education. Mary taught at Algona High School in Algona, IA, Laton High School in Laton, CA, and both Napa High and Vintage High Schools in Napa, CA. Mary and Leonard “Lenny” Massey were married on January 13, 1979, and enjoyed each other’s company immensely until Lenny’s passing on August 20, 1998. Mary retired from the Napa Valley Unified School District in 1989 with 31 years of service. In retirement, she kept close tabs on the farm ground that she owned near Welton, always interested in knowing if Iowa was getting enough rain.
Mary truly had a servant’s heart and shared her time and talents with the Napa Community Projects Thrift Shop, American Cancer Society, St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Napa, and the Napa Valley Genealogical and Biographical Society. She enjoyed researching her Irish roots and considered her work in publishing a Gannon Family Book as a huge life accomplishment in preserving the history and legacy of her family. Mary always kept fit and spent hours tap dancing and practicing tai chi. She enjoyed boating, fishing, RVing and traveling the world with Lenny.
Mary was preceded in death by her husband Leonard “Lenny” Massey; brothers James, Richard and John; sisters Rita Gannon Enters and infant twin sister Sarah Bridget Gannon; sisters-in-law Jeanne (Jack) Gannon and Phyllis (Jim) Gannon; brother-in-law Ray Enters; and stepdaughter Loretta Massey. Mary is survived by her brother, Thomas (Judy) Gannon, and sisters-in-law Madonna (Jim) Gannon and Susie (Dick) Gannon; 17 nieces and nephews; stepchildren Danny Fajardo and Lillian "Tootie" Massey Nugent; step grandchildren Robert Fajardo, Jolene Fajardo, and Yesod Williams; and numerous grand nieces, nephews and cousins.
The family will receive friends from 9:30 until 10:15 a.m. Saturday, October 2, 2021 at St. Joseph Catholic Church, DeWitt. A Memorial Mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday in the church with the Rev. Fr. Stephen Page officiating. Interment will follow in the church cemetery. All are invited to lunch afterward at Buzzy’s in Welton to continue celebrating Mary’s life of service and love. In lieu of other expressions of sympathy, the family requests donations be made to Community Projects, Inc., 715 Franklin Street, Napa, California, 94559.
The service will be live streamed at facebook.com/schultzfuneralhomes/live
Condolences may be expressed and a photo tribute viewed at www.schultzfuneralhomes.com.
Arrangements are in the care of Schultz Funeral Home, DeWitt.
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