Born: December 13, 1934 - Deceased: April 23, 2020
Mary Violet Rowan, nee Burris, 85, of Millstadt, IL, having fulfilled her earthly purpose, traveled on into eternal life Thursday, April 23, 2020.
She was wonderfully and beautifully made, born December 13, 1934, in Vienna, Illinois, to the late Hubert and Melba, nee Branscum, Burris. Mary graduated from McKinley High School in St. Louis, Missouri; she earned a bachelor’s degree in the field of education from Harris Stowe Teacher’s College and a master’s degree from Southern Mississippi University.
She married the love of her life, Carroll G. Rowan, on January 21, 1956. Woven together, a beautiful tapestry of sixty-four years together, the two of them created the home and family of their dreams. Carroll survives, along with their son, Steven G. Rowan of Saint Peters, MO, and daughter, Rebecca (Joseph) Androff of Belleville, IL; brothers, Joe (Norma) Burris of Maryville, IL, Kenneth (Elizabeth) Burris of Bradenton, FL, John (Beverly) Burris of Paducah, KY, and Jim Burris of Belleville, IL; sister, Teresa (Dr. Jack) Arnold of St. Louis, MO: and beloved grandchildren that she took a special pride in, Alex and Brendan Androff.
Mary was preceded in death by her parents and brothers, Thomas Burris, Jack Burris, and Ray Burris.
Mary utilized her many gifts and talents to help others discover theirs, so as to better self and community. She was a member and past president of her college sorority, Alpha Sigma Tau. Mrs. Rowan owned and operated the Rowan Kindergarten in Cahokia, IL, and led many students down the path of learning during her career as an Art Teacher for Harmony Emge School District #175. She also coached girls volleyball and conducted classes for gifted students during summer school. She was a terrific mentor, and many students became cherished adult friends and colleagues through the years.
Mary loved her home in Millstadt, planting and cultivating the vegetable garden alongside Carroll, and growing flowers to enjoy and use in her art. With great joy, Mary served as the past president for the St. Clair County Garden Club and was a member and past Church Council President for many years with the First Congregational Church in Dupo, IL.
Mary delighted in being with and caring for her beloved family and friends, being Aunt Mary to many nieces and nephews, creating inviting spaces, sharing great food, energetic conversation, and laughter. She brightened our lives and lit a path for others to follow. She will be greatly missed.
Memorials: Mary’s mortal enemy was Alzheimer’s. Those wishing to continue the fight for her and others may direct memorials to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Funeral: Due to Covid-19, private family services will be officiated by a special “daughter,” Rev. Janice L. Ringenberg, with a celebration of life to be held at a later date.