Mary Jane Cerutti Pierce was born the daughter of Paul Emilio and Grace Elva (Walden) Cerutti on December 6, 1926 in Thayer, Missouri and departed this life October 4, 2012 at Shady Oaks Heathcare in Thayer, Missouri at the age of 85 years.
She was united in marriage March 23, 1943 at Thayer, Missouri to Madison E. Pierce, who preceded her in death on May 27, 1992.
She is survived by eight children, Jim Pierce and wife, Dianne of Mammoth Spring, Arkansas, Betty Albright and husband, Marvin of Mammoth Spring, Rose Pierce of Mammoth Spring, Rocky Pierce of Mammoth Spring, Barbara Humphries and husband, Larry of Glencoe, Arkansas, Chet Pierce and wife, Ellen of Fayetteville, Arkansas, Steve Pierce and wife, Deniece of Mammoth Spring and Jesse Pierce and wife, Denise of Camp, Arkansas; nineteen grandchildren, Derek Pierce, Aitken Gallup, Michael Gallup, Cheryl Walsh, Brad Pierce, Tony Pierce, Isaphene Pierce, Link Humphries, Jo Kaye Bandy, Tyler Humphries, Stephanie Pierce, Jamie Pierce, Andrea Thompson, Joshua Pierce, Amber Reynolds, Ben Leisenring, Jerad Stokes, Tiffany Cooper and Ethan Pierce; twenty-four great grandchildren; four great great grandchildren; three brothers, Bill Cerutti and wife, Ruby of Independence, Missouri, Hugh Cerutti and wife, Lennice of Farmington, Missouri and Zack Cerutti and wife, June of Thayer, Missouri; a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Madison E. Pierce; one grandson, Matthew Allen Pierce; her parents, Paul and Grace Cerutti; maternal grandparents, Emery Osgood and Elva Cordelia Walden; and one sister, Pauline E. Cerutti Hufstedler.
Mary attended school during the Great Depression, occasionally having to miss school to help work for the support of her family. While in high school, she met her husband, Madison, who she married at the age of 16. She was a dedicated homemaker while her children were growing up and Madison worked in the timber industry. She was, herself, a hard-worker and determined to help provide for the needs of her family. While the children were young, the entire family would travel to the bottomlands of Arkansas to pick cotton in order to make ends meet. Later, she took a job with the Thayer News, where she worked for twenty years setting print for the newspaper and doing job printing. When the paper sold, she began working as a certified nurse’s aide at the Thayer Nursing Home which later became known as Shady Oaks Healthcare. In 1980 Mary was elected the first female Justice of the Peace of Fulton county in Arkansas. At the age of seventy-two, she retired from full-time employment and began volunteering at the Mammoth Spring Schools as a Foster Grandmother.
She was a member of Grand Gulf Shiloh Church where she often sang solos or with the choir. She enjoyed working in her flower garden, quilting and reading a good book.
Mary will be remembered as a wonderful, loving and caring mother, grandmother and friend and will truly be missed by all who knew and loved her.
Funeral Services for Mrs. Pierce will be Sunday, October 7, 2012 at 2:00 PM in the Carter Funeral Home Chapel at Thayer. Burial will be in the Riverside Cemetery at Mammoth Spring, Arkansas.
The family will receive friends at the Funeral Home Saturday, October 6, 2012 from 5:00 until 7:00 PM.