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Mary C. Pettis, 90, of Spring Township, passed away peacefully on Tuesday June 14, 2022, at 4:18 am in her residence. She was the wife of the late Christ I. Pettis who passed away October 18, 2008.
Born in Reading, Mrs. Pettis was the daughter of the late Pantelis and Despina (Hadjipavlis) Carnoles. A 1949 graduate of Reading High School, she continued her education at Kutztown State Teachers College. She graduated in 1953 with a Bachelor of Science in Art Education. Her 31-year teaching career began in Windham, New York. She taught in the Manheim Central School District and the Reading School District, as well. Mary retired after 18 years at Wilson Central Junior High. Additionally, she was an ESL teacher through Berks County IU in the 1970s, teaching English to students who had recently immigrated from Greece.
The Church and philanthropy were substantial parts of Mary’s life. She was a life-long member of Sts. Constantine and Helen’s Greek Orthodox Church. She was involved with the Sunday School since she was a senior in high school, serving as a Sunday School teacher for many years, as well as Sunday School Supervisor. As a teen, she was a member of the Junior G.A.P.A. – a Hellenic cultural and philanthropic organization. Additionally, she was a member of several ad hoc committees including the Church’s Diamond Jubilee and Centennial Celebration Committees. She lent her beautiful voice to the church choir and volunteered in the church office, as well. Her artistic talents were often called upon to design logos and art for the church including a cookbook, note cards, and most notably, the Greek Evzone that was the well-known logo of the Church Bazaar for decades.
The organization that was dearest to Mary’s heart was St. Xenia’s Philoptochos Society, a philanthropic organization whose name translates to “Friend of the Poor.” She served in multiple board positions as well as two terms as President. She established a Memorials Committee within the organization to prepare the Kolyva, a boiled wheat food offered liturgically during memorial services. She loved speaking with family members about their loved ones and offering memories of their lives.
However, the most important part of Mary’s life was her family. Her husband, children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews were the lights of her life. She and her husband celebrated 52 beautiful years of marriage and were amazing role models of cooperation, love, and commitment. She loved attending all the sporting events, concerts, and award ceremonies of her children and grandchildren. She shared her love of art with them, spending hours teaching them techniques and letting them express their creativity. She entertained them with her amazing gift for storytelling mixed in with her fabulous sense of humor.
Mary is survived by her children David C. Pettis, husband of Ann Marie Pettis of Sinking Spring and Cassandra M. Karamanos, wife of Nicholas C. Karamanos of Lancaster; her granddaughters Jessica Pettis, Maria Karamanos, and Amelia Karamanos. She is also survived by her twin sister Lula Goodhart, wife of the late Richard Goodhart, of Gainesville, Florida, and was preceded in death by her siblings Virginia Dilworth, Elizabeth Zeswitz, and Vasiliki Carnoles.
Funeral Service will be held at Saints Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church 1001 East Wyomissing Blvd. Reading, PA 19611, Monday, June 20, 2022 at 11:00 am. Reverend Theodore Petrides and Reverend Constantine Alexandrides will officiate. Interment will follow at Charles Evans Cemetery. The family will receive relatives and friends at Saints Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church Monday from 10:00 am to 11:00 am. In lieu of flowers contributions may be made to St. Xenia Philoptochos Society c/o Saints Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church at the above address or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105 in memory of Mrs. Mary C. Pettis. Bean Funeral Home 3825 Penn Ave. Sinking Spring is in charge of arrangements and online condolences may be made at www.beanfuneralhomes.com
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