Mary McKey Allou
A loving person to all she encountered, Mary Gertrude McKey Allou died on June 12, 2020 at age 78 after a short battle with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. Mary was born in Detroit, Michigan to Pauline Helen Feys McKey and Thomas J Mckey. She had two older brothers, Tom and Mike, both deceased, and a younger sister with whom she was best friends, Martha McKey Leffler of Vashon Island, Washington. Mary fondly remembered family vacations in Canada and at Michigan Lakes. She was a graduate of Marygrove College in Detroit and Florida State University. It was at Florida State that she met her late husband, Anthony Louis Allou Jr. They married in 1966 and were blessed with two healthy boys, Anthony L Allou III, and John L Allou.
After moving for several jobs, in 1973 they settled into their first long-term home in Spartanburg, South Carolina. While there, Mary raised the boys, managed the household, and plunged herself into a life of service and compassion. She worked diligently in support of various social charities through her church communities. She assisted with migrant workers, delivered communion to those unable to attend Mass, taught school as needed, and was active in providing support to those needing financial or subsistence assistance through Crisis Action Ministries, Meals on Wheels, and other organizations A yearly tradition for Mary was to take her two sons to the National Guard Armory in Spartanburg every Thanksgiving to fill bags with community food donations for the most needy in the area.
In 1988 Mary and Tony moved to Charlotte, North Carolina. In 1990 they moved to Augsburg, Germany where they lived for two years before returning to Charlotte. Mary remained committed to charitable works throughout this time, including Charlotte’s Crisis Assistance Ministry and other outreach groups through her church. Over the years she and Tony traveled extensively - throughout Europe and into Eastern Asia, thoroughly enjoying each culture they encountered. In 2000, her oldest son, Anthony III, married Megan Brown and they brought two grandchildren into Mary’s family - Anthony IV and Clare. One of the most wonderful times of her life was when both sons were living in North Carolina from 2009-2011. It was in those years that she was able to spend the most time with her grandchildren, teaching them her love of art and nature.
In 2011, her husband Tony began suffering from dementia. His slow but steady decline, combined with other health issues led them to move into the Aldersgate community in 2014. Mary made many new friends there, and was thankful for their support, love and camaraderie. She was Tony’s constant caregiver throughout the progression of the disease, and sacrificed greatly to keep him healthy and as happy as possible. This was no surprise to those who knew her. Tony passed in early 2018. She lost her greatest companion in life after more than 51 years of marriage.
Mary, also known as Mom and Granny, had a loving and kind soul. She felt that every person, no matter their station or circumstance, was deserving of mercy and compassion. She always saw the good in the people she met, and considered every person to be a part of the spirit of God She was charitable to all - friends, family, and strangers alike. She truly felt that all of us are called to serve our fellow man and woman, and she lived by that philosophy every day of her life. She was genuine to everyone, and entirely without artifice. She found the simple things in life to be the most satisfying. She was happiest having good food and wine with family and friends, gardening, reflecting in nature, hearing the call of a bird, creating art with her hands and heart, commenting on the return of butterflies and frogs in spring, and listening to music. Her simple grace and strong convictions of kindness and mercy made her loved by all who met her.
Her passing was quick, but she was kept comfortable and at peace through the efforts of the local medical community and the hospice workers who watched over her final days. She wished she had the time to personally reach out to all who made her life special.
She is survived by son Anthony III, daughter-in-law Megan Brown, grandchildren Anthony IV and Clare, all of Coralville, Iowa; son John of Somerville, Massachusetts; and sister Martha Leffler of Vashon, Washington. Also surviving are six nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held at a future time when medical risks will permit a gathering to celebrate her life.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Doctors Without Borders
40 Rector St., 16th Floor, New York NY 10006
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Doctors Without Borders (NY)
40 Rector St., 16th Floor, New York NY 10006