Mary Louise (Meyer) Romano passed away peacefully in her home in Yonkers, New York, surrounded by her loving family and caregivers on November 4, 2023. Affectionally nicknamed Marilou, she was born on December 15, 1928, in Yonkers. She lived through the Great Depression and attended college at the State Teachers College at New Paltz (now SUNY New Paltz), where she graduated in 1950 with a degree in elementary education. At New Paltz, she was active in her "Clio" sorority, where she met lifelong friends who she had reunions with for over six decades.
Marilou was an elementary school teacher in Peekskill and Hastings before marrying John N. Romano of Yonkers on July 4, 1953. They were married for 66 years. While raising their six children, Marilou was known as the mom who welcomed all the neighborhood kids into her home, no matter the day or time. The "family room couch and table were a home away from home" for some, and there was an endless supply of homemade chocolate chip cookies for all to enjoy. She was "a saint" for the patience she showed toward her rambunctious sons, their childhood friends, and even, on occasion, her husband John. Despite a busy home life, she found time to volunteer in the schools and community, most notably she was a Girl Scout and Boy Scout leader, whose scouts included future lawyers, teachers, judges, dentists, doctors, and an astronaut.
Although her time teaching in the classroom was limited, Marilou spent her life educating her children and grandchildren about science, nature, culture, and history. She led family field trips to museums, the zoo, botanical gardens, the theater, and historical sites. During the summers, the family and their dog Charlie would explore the wonders of the Cape Cod shoreline at Dowses Beach in Osterville, Massachusetts. She was a daily reader of The New York Times and often mailed articles she found particularly interesting to her children and grandchildren. She had a full set of encyclopedias that she would often refer to when a question came up and later would tell her family and caregivers to "Google it" to learn more about a topic.
Marilou especially loved educating herself. She quenched her thirst for knowledge by reading, listening to NPR, watching PBS, and traveling. She and her husband John explored Europe during their honeymoon and spent the next 60 years traveling the globe, visiting six of the seven continents. They saw Europe when the scars from World War II were still visible and the Post-Soviet republics in the 1990s. Marilou's travel itinerary included not only the typical attractions, but also taking courses while abroad and traveling with professors knowledgeable with the history and culture of the places they visited. In her later years, she tested her world knowledge each night by watching Jeopardy!.
Throughout her life, Marilou enjoyed arts and crafts. She made rugs, and sewed blankets and pillows for her family. She never missed a birthday, Halloween, Valentine's Day, or Christmas, and sent homemade cards and cookies to her children and grandchildren. She also loved listening to music. Barbara Cook, Tony Bennett, and Broadway Show tunes were often playing in the background while she was cooking or doing laundry. Marilou was a connoisseur of fine chocolates and often enjoyed a glass of Pinot Grigio with her dinner.
Marilou was kind, fair, and respectful to all. She chose her words carefully which made them especially meaningful. She is predeceased by her husband John and brother Peter Meyer, and survived by her brother Donald Meyer and six children: John (Celeste), Andrew (Nuhad), Ellen Dorr, Joseph, Daniel (Carla), and Amy (Brian Silfer); thirteen grandchildren; and nieces and nephews. She will be greatly missed, and her family is indebted to her caregivers, especially Claudia, for bringing her joy during her final years.
A private celebration of her life will be held in December, which would have been Marilou's 95th birthday. Memorial donations may be made to: Beczak Environmental Education Center in Yonkers, New York, or Enrico Fermi Education Fund of Yonkers Inc.
A Memorial Tree was planted for Mary
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Sinatra Memorial Home