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The Life of Mary R. Curtiss

Mary Ruth Young Curtiss, 95, long-time resident of Ridley Park, PA, member of Ridley Park Presbyterian Church, died peacefully on Wednesday, April 11, 2018. Born at home on December 15, 1922 in Pine, PA to the late Addison and Bertha Stabley Young, she was the second oldest of 8 children. She attended Glen-Nor High School in Glenolden, PA where she studied Secretarial Training and Bookkeeping, graduating in 1940.

In March 1941 she was hired as a clerk in the Accounting Department of the Pennsylvania RR in the Passenger Ticket Department. The free passes from the railroad gave her a zest for travel. She worked for the P.R.R. for 17 years.

Mary volunteered to be a Girl Scout Leader where she earned the nickname of “Penny.” She had many fond memories of camping with the girls, coordinating community service projects along with the honor of awarding girls badges for their hard work.

She met the love of her life, Joseph Curtiss in 1953 and married on June 5, 1954. She accepted a position as the Library Aide for Lakeview Elementary School in the Ridley School District in 1972 until her retirement in 1987.

She was active in many organizations including Verner Memorial Chapter and Springfield Chapter of the Eastern Star and the International Order of the Rainbow for Girls. She served as a Deacon in her church and on the Pastoral Nominating Committee. She volunteered her time many years with the American Lung Association’s Christmas Seal program, the Association for the Blind for 15 years and for the Literacy Council teaching reading to adults for 3 years.

She loved knitting, crocheting, embroidery, sewing and quilting for her family. She also immensely enjoyed working the cryptogram in the newspaper. She loved traveling and continued to do so during her retirement years.

She lived at a time of the “Bread Man”, the “Milk Man”, the “Organ Grinder”, the Umbrella Man, and the “Rag Man” and experienced technology that she could never have imagined. Her family was the first on the street to have a television. She had wonderful stories from her youth and she will be missed but never forgotten.

Mary was predeceased by her loving husband of 48 years, Joseph Alexander Curtiss, an infant daughter, Joy Marie Curtiss, brothers, Othmar Young, Donald Young, David Young, Robert Young, and Addison Young and a sister, Charlotte Young Thomas.

Survivors include a sister, Vera Young McDermit, three children, Jill Curtiss Patterson (Robert Patterson), Bruce Curtiss and Blaine Curtiss; grandchildren, Robert Patterson, Jr, Margot Patterson Williams (Lauren Williams), Bruce Curtiss, Jr and Heather Curtiss; great grandchildren, Bayden Patterson and Greyson Brasch along with many nieces and nephews.

Service  at the Ridley Park Presbyterian Church, 300 N. Swarthmore Ave, Ridley Park, PA at 1:00 p.m.

Interment to follow at Arlington Cemetery, Drexel Hill, PA.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in her name to the American Heart Association, https://donatenow.heart.org/


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