Mary Ann Hesche, 87

Mary Ann Hesche went to be with her Lord and Savior on Saturday, April 11, 2020, at Appledorn Assisted Living South at the age of 87.

She was born on Nov. 14, 1932, in Grand Rapids, daughter of Andrew and Marie Hoffman. Mary is survived by her beloved husband of 67 years, Ron; children, Dawn (Larry) Meiste, June (Gary) Walega, Ken (Lisa) Hesche, and Rhonda (Mark) Kuyers; 11 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Mary was preceded in death by her son, Larry; parents and stepfather Sieger Heys; sister Martha Schut (Hoffman) and husband Herbert; and brother Cornelius (Neil) and wife Verda (Johnson).

While growing up, Mary and her family lived on a 100-acre farm in Ada. She very much enjoyed the farming lifestyle. She especially loved her horse, Sparky, whom she named after the sparks that came off his shoes when trotting on hard surfaces.

Mary graduated from Grand Rapids Christian High School in 1950 and began working for the Keebler Company in Grand Rapids. She also joined a softball league. Coach Ron took a shining to her and, as they say, the rest is history. In 1952, they married and moved to Lake City, where the couple lived for a year. They then moved to Fennville where they remained for the next 42 years. They built their dream home in Holland and remained there until they moved together to Appledorn Assisted Living.

Mary’s priorities in life were 1) God/Jesus, 2) family, 3) friends, 4) everything else. These priorities were very evident in the way she lived her life.

She was a strong, independent woman, but what mattered most to her was her family. She was a devoted wife and mother and did all she could to make certain her children knew that a personal relationship with Jesus was the only way to have Eternal Life. High on Mom’s priority list was making sure she honored our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ by helping others in need. She did so through her church and by being active in her community. At church, she was the Women’s Church Guild President, a Sunday School teacher, a member of the choir, and many other functions.

In the community, she was PTA president, band booster president, and Cub Scout den mother, while at the same time raising her five children.

Mary worked for several years at Michigan Fruit Canners in Fennville and, over a short period of time, with only a high school diploma, she was promoted to quality control manager. She also worked for Creative Dining Services at Hope College, where she was known for her much-sought-after chocolate chip cookies and legendary banana bread.

Grandma Hesche adored every one of her grandkids. She enjoyed every moment with them, either as their babysitter or traveling long distances just to visit. She would organize fun projects—often involving her glue gun—and take them on outings like garage sale-ing or going to the park. Grandma Hesche knew just how to make each of her grandkids feel special and, above all, loved.

She was an encourager and a joy to be around. Whether you called her Mom, Grandma, or Mary, she left an indelible mark on each one of our lives and we’ll miss her dearly.

A public gathering will not be held at this time, however, a memorial celebration is being planned for a future date to be determined.

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