Sept. 9, 1922 — Aug. 13, 2019 SARATOGA SPRINGS — Mary Catherine (Bell) Shevrovich, 96, died peacefully on Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2019, surrounded by her loving family.
Mary Catherine was born at home on the Bell family farm in Alma, Michigan, daughter of Joseph Frederick and Ellen Wynne Bell, on Sept. 9, 1922.
She joined her sister, Mary Winifred, and three brothers, Joseph, John, and James Bell. Her parents and all four siblings predeceased her.
Mary Catherine attended a one-room country school through eighth grade, then graduated from Alma High School in 1940 and Alma College in 1944. While a student at Alma College, Mary Catherine was a champion debater, a popular vocalist, and homecoming queen.
It was also at Alma College that she met her future husband, John Shevrovich, a midshipman in the Navy V-12 program. Despite winning a debate competition arguing against wartime marriages, she did just that, marrying John in a 1944 Thanksgiving Day ceremony. The groom arrived home on leave just two hours before the scheduled Mass after six months at sea. Despite Mary Catherine’s initial reaction to seeing John in his dress blues awaiting her at the altar: “I hardly know this man!” she did walk down the aisle. They were happily married for almost 69 years until John’s death in 2013.
After college graduation, Mary Catherine taught U.S. Government and English at Richmond High School. An accomplished vocalist, she performed in local clubs with pianist Casey Jones and guitarist Kenny Burrell as the Casey Jones Trio. Until his death, her husband, John, carried a small card in his wallet listing his favorite ten songs from Mary Catherine’s repertoire complete with key signatures, ever ready to encourage any request or command performance of them.
Mary Catherine and John lived in Alma, Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, and Jackson, Michigan, before moving to their beloved Lake George, in 1965 when John became its Superintendent of Schools. No matter where they lived, their lives were centered around religion, education, and their seven daughters. For many years, Mary Catherine was active in Sacred Heart parish as a cantor, lector, choir member, religious education teacher, and Eucharistic minister. She was a staunch supporter of the Lake George schools from which six of her seven daughters graduated.
Mary Catherine is survived by her seven daughters and their families who loved her dearly, Mary Ellen (David) Smith of Saratoga Springs, Kathleen (Anthony) Salvato of Catskill, Anne (Robert) Mason of Cleverdale, Irene (Brian) McHugh of Orange Park, Florida, Laura (Daniel) Noonan of Ballston Spa, Carol (Keith) Roberts of Bayou Vista, Texas, and Teresa (Jeff) Dutcher of Niskayuna; 15 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Calling hours will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019 at Regan Denny Stafford Funeral Home, 53 Quaker Road, Queensbury.
A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated by Father Joseph Busch at 11 a.m. Monday, Aug. 19, at Sacred Heart Church in Lake George.
Burial will follow at Evergreen Cemetery, Lake George.
Those who wish to send a remembrance in Mary Catherine’s name may do so to North Country Ministry, 3933 Main St., Warrensburg, NY 12885.
The family would like to extend thanks and appreciation to the second floor staff at Hathorn, Wesley Nursing Home, Saratoga Springs for their loving care of Mary Catherine.