Obituary of Mary K. Schalm
Mary Kay, as her many beloved family & friends affectionately knew her, passed away on September 11, 2022 after a battle with esophageal cancer. She will be greatly missed for the tremendously kind, caring person that she was. She lived her life selflessly, never missing the opportunity to celebrate others’ lives.
Mary Kay was born on October 19, 1941, in Chicago, IL, to Wallace Leo Fromhart & Donnabelle (Parvis). Both parents preceded her in death, as well as her brother, Wally Jr. She is survived by her other two siblings, Terry Moore (Fromhart) and Jimmy Fromhart. She spent much of her childhood moving throughout the Midwest as her father, Wally, took different football head coaching positions after his All-American career at Notre Dame. She lived in Illinois, Iowa, and eventually Detroit, MI. There, she attended Immaculata High School, where she made lifelong friendships with a group of women who still get together annually.
When she was a young girl in Iowa, Mary Kay unknowingly swallowed poison. As a result of the damage it wreaked in her body, her doctors always said she would not live long. In true Mary Kay fighting fashion, despite losing part of her esophagus from this, which eventually contributed to the cancer, she not only proved the doctors wrong, but went on to live an 80 year life full of love and adventure. A life in which she always gave far more of herself than she expected to receive, as her many close acquaintances can attest.
Mary Kay married Mike Brown in Detroit, MI, and had 3 children, Mickey (Lisa), Chris (Sharon), and Meghan, who all still cherish her memory. She ended up earning her Bachelor’s degree with a career in computer finance, until her eventual retirement. In her later years, she absolutely adored her grandchildren: Sachi, Nico, Marcus, Sammi, Jaydis, Shayla, and Bella. She never once missed any of their birthdays, nor any holiday, and she kept every bit of correspondence & all the pictures she had from them.
In 2007, Mary Kay married Lew Schalm, who preceded her in death. They made a lot of great memories and friends together, splitting time between Sister Lakes, MI, & Sun City West, AZ. In true loving Mary Kay fashion, she quickly adopted Lew’s family as her own, welcoming his adult children, Kelly (Mike), Carolyn, & Dave (Jill), as well as all of their children into her boundless heart.
Mary Kay also kept in close contact with her surviving nephews and nieces: Lori, Aron, Jeri, Conee, Joy, Steve, Kathy, & Alice, and cherished all of their spouses & children. The frequent family reunions they had in Sister Lakes and West Virginia were always lively events with no shortage of excitement (& Euchre).
Mary Kay’s indomitable spirit will live on through all of her many beloved family members & dear friends’ memories. We look forward to having a celebration of life for Mary Kay in June 2023, in a place she always found comforting and magical, Sister Lakes, MI. We will be sure to let all her loved ones know the date of the event. She will also be recognized with a headstone in Highland Cemetery in South Bend, IN, next to her beloved parents, Wally and Donna. This obituary will be posted on www.regencymortuary.com.
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