Mary Jo Brien, 85, of South Bend, Indiana passed away on Friday, February 19, 2021 surrounded by her family. She was born in Dowagiac, Michigan to the late Vaughn B. Shew and Frances G. (Schlorff) Shew Westjohn on September 15, 1935. She is a graduate of the class of 1953 from Cadillac High School, Cadillac, Michigan. Mary Jo is survived by her loving husband Michael Bernard whom she married on December 21, 1963 in Holy Cross Catholic Church. She is also survived by their children, James Michael Brien of South Bend, Indiana, Patricia Marie Brien of South Bend, Indiana and David William (Nelle) Brien of Carmel, Indiana, grandchildren, Amber Marie (Kevin), Cleopatra Catherine, John Taylor, Mary Elizabeth and Rebecca Johanna, great grandchildren Charley Marieand Lucy June, two brothers, Richard (Glorianne) Shew of Metamora, Michigan, David (Beverly) Westjohn of Mason, Michigan, and sister-in-law, Margaret Ruth Westjohn of Elkhart, Indiana and many nieces, nephews and friends. Mary Jo was also preceded in death by two sisters, Phyllis Ann Shew and Patricia June Westjohn and one brother, Michael Westjohn.
As a young adult Mary Jo moved to South Bend to find adventure in the “big city” and worked as a bank teller in downtown South Bend. She soon met Michael at The White House in Niles, Michigan where their courtship began. She devoted herself to her husband and children as a homemaker. She was as dedicated to her family, her husband, his family, her children, her brothers and their families, as they were to her. In addition to caring for her family, Mary Jo had several hobbies which included solving crossword puzzles, knitting gifts, reading books, enjoying the theatre and most prominently playing cards. Mary Jo shared thislove with her husband, children, and friends. Decades of her Friday and Saturday nights were spent around card tables where lifelong friendships formed and flourished.
A visitation will be held on Thursday, February 25, 2021 at Holy Cross Catholic Church from 9:30 am until 11:00 am. A Catholic funeral Mass will be held at 11:00 am in the church. Burial will take place at a later date. Memorial Contributions may be made to Holy Cross Catholic Church, 1050 Wilber St, South Bend, IN 46628 or Center for Hospice Care, 501 Comfort Place, Mishawaka, Indiana 46545. Online condolences may be left at www.kaniewski.com
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