Born November 29, 1923. Left with the Angels on May, 25, 2015
Mary or “Mom” was a person that never knew a stranger. She was a firm believer in Equal Rights. All people were the same in her eyes. She taught her children that they were no better than anyone else, and no one was better than them. In other words, she believed we were ALL God’s people.
Mary was compassionate to the sick, lonely and troubled. She served as a Eucharistic Minister at Holy Rosary and Holy Spirit, visited the sick and elderly parishioners, cooked for Funeral dinners and made a point to involve her children in volunteering their time to bring comfort to all they touched. Her children learned by her straight-forward Christian example.
A lifelong member of the Democratic Party, she was a Precinct Committeeperson for a whopping 35 years! She worked for several candidates she believed in such as President Kennedy, President Carter and several local politicians such as Senator Burch Bayh and his son, Evan. Even when her #6 son was born the same day and time as President John Kennedy’s son, she named her son, John Fitzgerald Esparza, in tribute to President Kennedy.
Mary worked tirelessly at Holy Rosary Church as a Charter Member of this now, thriving and growing parish. She wanted to build a caring Catholic community of the sparsely populated East Side of Evansville. There were only four houses in the early days of her neighborhood. If you can imagine, Green River Road was made of gravel!
The small brick house on the corner of Polster Drive and Sycamore was a welcoming place. Coffee, compassion and laughter were always brewing. Neighbors and neighborhood kids would come in and she would always have a smile, hug, a delicious cup of coffee, a glass of ice tea, a gallon jug of Kool-Aid for the kids, or a home cooked meal waiting. No one left Mary’s doorstep hungry. She fed you whether you wanted it or not!
Mom believed that food was the cement of the Esparza Family. She cooked as a labor of love. The older “Esparza Boys” affectionately named one of her signature creations, “Cruddy Bread.” It was the best home baked bread you could ever eat. They harangued their Mom to buy store bought bread. Of course, when she bought the store bread, the kids knew “Cruddy Bread” was the best in the world. Every Saturday, Mary would make a huge pot of her signature “Garbage Soup.” She would save leftovers and put in canned veggies from her garden into it. The meat in “Garbage Soup” would be whatever was on sale that week at the IGA grocery store.
At Halloween, the Esparza house had a line of kids and parents around the corner of the block to collect Mom’s homemade popcorn balls and candied apples. Any time when the family would gather, Mary made mouth-watering meals, wonderful pies, and various cobblers. Her signature “Lamb Cakes” (a delicious confection shaped like a lamb) was the best. She loved to decorate cakes and even volunteered to make wedding cakes for friends and family.
Mary would invite the Clergy of Holy Rosary parish to the Esparza house for occasional Sunday dinners. She wanted her children to appreciate the Nun’s and Priest’s religious sacrifice and love of God. It was a time she could break out the fine china and spoil the Esparza Family’s special guests.
Sewing was a necessity with such a large family. Mom sewed until the wee hours making matching dresses for her daughters Connie and Emily. Even in the early days, she would take in laundry and sew for the neighborhood families to earn few extra dollars.
Mary was a fun-loving woman who transferred her zeal of life to her children and those around her. She loved to sing, and of course, dance. When she would have an occasional night out, Mary would coax her sons out on the VFW dance floor to “cut a rug.” She belonged to the Burdette Roller Skating Club and would take her kids roller skating every Monday night. She taught her children sing songs and harmonize by heart on the ride there. All of her children learned, “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” by memory.
Mary was determined to have her children graduate high school and go to college, if they wished. She worked hard to support, guide and help them to achieve their goals. Whether her child was a hard working Union man, a Singer/Songwriter, Violinist, or Author, she wanted her children to explore and pursue their dreams. Four of her sons became Boilermakers (people who keep the Energy and Power companies going) and following in their father’s footsteps, three of her Grandsons became Boilermakers as well. All of her children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren had the example of her determination to be the best they can be.
Adversity and tragedy has tested Mary and her family, especially with the loss of her beloved Daughter – Constance Ayon or “Connie” at the age of 15 to Leukemia. That is why St. Jude’s Hospital was patronized by Mary every month. Mary was asked by her daughter, Emily, how she handled it. She said, “I cried in private and persevered. I knew I had to be a Mom, not only to Connie, but to my other children. It was important to me that I supported you, in your time of grief. Not mine.”
An independent and proud woman of great faith and easy-going manner, Mom tried her best to love and not say a harsh word against anyone. She was that determined to carry herself with dignity and respectful of all who needed her help and guidance. Mary didn’t have much, but she gave what she could to help others.
Later on in life, Mom eventually succumbed to the devastating illness, Alzheimer’s. The disease took away her independence, and that was the harshest blow she could imagine. Mom is now reunited with her loved ones in Heaven. She has passed a great legacy to the entire Esparza Family of determination to overcome adversity, inclusivity, laughter, zest of life, and tolerance of ALL God’s people.
PS: Dear Mom, I hope I will see the butterflies, red roses and daisies you pick in Heaven with Connie. Until then, I have your strength and love to live up to for the rest of my life. Just keep a coffee warm for me until then… your loving daughter, Emmy.
Welcome to the Blood Vengeance (Blood Curse Series, #7) by Tessa Dawn Release Day Blitz.
The Blood Curse Series Trailer
Please join us today at the Release Day Event on Facebook on
April 27, 2015 from 9:00am – 8:00pm in MDT
Don’t be surprised if you get tagged by the BCS Fairy. Lots of fun to be had.
The Series in Reading Order
Blood Genesis – Prequel
Blood Destiny – Book 1
Blood Awakening – Book 2
Blood Possession – Book 3
Blood Shadows – Book 4
Blood Redemption – Book 5
Blood Father – Book 6
Blood Vengeance – Book 7
Blood Ecstasy Book 8 – Coming Soon
Tessa Dawn grew up in Colorado where she developed a deep affinity for the Rocky Mountains. After graduating with a degree in psychology, she worked for several years in criminal justice and mental health before returning to get her Master’s Degree in Nonprofit Management.
Tessa began writing as a child and composed her first full-length novel at the age of eleven. By the time she graduated high-school, she had a banker’s box full of short-stories and books. Since then, she has published works as diverse as poetry, greeting cards, workbooks for kids with autism, and academic curricula. The Blood Curse Series marks her long-desired return to her creative-writing roots and her first foray into the Dark Fantasy world of vampire fiction.
Tessa currently splits her time between the Colorado suburbs and mountains with her husband, two children, and “one very crazy cat.” She hopes to one day move to the country where she can own horses and what she considers “the most beautiful creature ever created” — a German Shepherd.
Writing is her bliss.
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