Mary Ellen (Ellen) Stricker passed away peacefully in her daughter’s home surrounded by loving family members on December 29, 2020. She joined her husband John (Jack) Stricker who passed away in 2001. Ellen is survived by six of seven children (Sue Douglas, Mary Ellen Kohut, Nancy Brodie, Jim Stricker, Bill Stricker, and Patricia Carson (brother John Stricker passed in 2006), 16 grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
Ellen Stricker (nee Lybarger) and twin sister Elaine were born in Shaker Heights Ohio February 14, 1926. She married Jack Stricker in 1947 and raised 7 children in Richmond Heights Ohio. Children and grandchildren remember delightful summer days spent on the lake at the Willard Ohio “Landing.” Ellen, nicknamed “Coach”, was dedicated to family first and then her community. A true trailblazer, she was basketball coach at a time when most women did not play sports. Ellen was the first pool manager for Richmond Heights, and ran the lifeguard training and swim programs for Cuyahoga County (Cleveland) mentoring a generation of lifeguards. She was an active volunteer in Girl Scouts and CYO. She taught daughters and granddaughters there were no boundaries to what they could do or be in this world. When she and Jack moved to Sun Lakes Arizona she continued volunteer work in the community and taught her grandchildren to bake her famous bread.
Her grandchildren describe her legacy: Beautiful Grandmother, you are the foundation of the most amazing family anyone could have. You have modeled the true meaning of grace, class, determination, and unconditional love which you have taught us are the components of the most important unit in the world: FAMILY. As long as we love and respect each other, we remember and honor our Grandma.
A Celebration of Life is planned for summer 2021.