Mary E. Blake (nee McKenna), 83, passed away peacefully on Friday, April 3, 2020, at Chatham Hills Subacute Care Center in Chatham, N.J.
Prior to his passing in 2017, Mary and her husband of 56 years, Robert R., lived most of their adoring lives together in Newark, N.J.
A graduate of the Newark St. Michael's Nursing School, Mary worked for many years as an RN at St. Mary's Hospital in Orange, N.J., until it ceased serving as a hospital. She finished her career at Winchester Gardens Retirement Community in Maplewood, N.J.
For decades Mary was an active member of her parish, Immaculate Heart of Mary in Maplewood, and greatly enjoyed participating in various activities with connections to her faith and proud Irish-American heritage.
Mary was predeceased by her sisters, Kathleen and husband Hugh "Mac" McNulty, Elizabeth and husband Joseph Lee, and brother Joseph McKenna and wife Florence. In addition to her sister-in-law Leigh Blake, Mary is survived by her devoted daughter Patricia Staunton, her husband John and cherished grandson Michael; dedicated son Robert G. and his longtime partner Veronica; and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews, all of whom she loved immeasurably.
Known for her heart of gold, Mary had a profound belief that there is absolute good in everyone. Acquaintances were friends, friends were family, and family was everything!
The family would like to give special thanks and recognition to the staffs of Chatham Hills and Overlook Medical Center for the attention and help given in Mary's final weeks. As a former nurse, Mary always had enormous empathy for the countless challenges faced every day by largely unsung health care providers. With the current pandemic and the economic hardships it is causing, in lieu of flowers it would serve Mary's legacy for donations and contributions to be made instead to local rescue squads and food pantries.
A Mass and celebration of Mary's life will be held at a future date. Details will be available through Jacob Holle Funeral Home in Maplewood when arrangements are determined.