On September 2, 1948 Mary Alene Perlenfein arrived at the Wray Hospital to bless the home of Alvin and Darlene (Hadley) Perlenfein. She had the usual childhood of attending Sunday School at the Methodist Church and getting awards for perfect attendance. When Mary was almost four she was joined by a baby sister, Jill Susan.
She started first grade at North School, then proceeded to West School for third grade. By then she was old enough to start trumpet lessons and join 4-H in summer.
In Yuma High School Mary continued band but added Pep Club and Drill Squad.
She also had 4-H sewing projects in summer winning several awards in construction and style review. She graduated with the Class of 1966.
In 1966 Mary was united in marriage to Neil McConnell. To this family three
children were born: Alan Ray, John Aaron and Lisa Ann. The marriage ended in divorce.
Mary sold Avon products and prepared excellent weekly meals for Rotary Club.
While doing this she decided to further her education by attending NJC at Sterling.
After finishing NJC she moved to Greeley where she enrolled at UNC obtaining her Degree in Social Studies and English. During her senior year at UNC Mary was the first recipient of the newly established Colorado Federation of Republican Women Memorial Scholarship. After teaching at various schools Mary found she liked working with special needs children. She returned to UNC where she received a Masters in Special Education. Mary was teaching in Yuma when she had a disabling stroke.
Mary had been a member of Eastern Star, did volunteer work for Hillside Baptist Church in Greeley, and was a very talented artist with needlework and sewing. She won many first prizes at the Yuma County Fair. After suffering a second stroke
which left her an invalid she passed away at Hillcrest Care Center (Wray) March 19, 2020.
Mary is survived by her son Alan (Tia) and sons Matt and Quentin, son John (Jen) and son Liam, daughter Lisa (Chuck) Conner, mother Darlene Perlenfein, sister Jill Wenger and son Jadon, and many other relatives and friends.
Due to Coronavirus restrictions, a graveside service was held in the Yuma Cemetery March 24, 2020 with Pastor Chris Mulder officiating.
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