Mary Catherine (Kreyenbuhl) Gissy, 88, of Starke and Dunnellon, FL., passed away surrounded by her children at 7:17am Sunday, September 8, at Health Central Park in Winter Garden Florida, where she had been for the past several months. How fitting that Jesus would call her home on Grandparents Day and his mother Mary’s birthday. Mary was born on August 13, 1931 in Doddridge County, WV in her family home in the town of Leopold. She was the youngest of five children, born from the union of Edward William Kreyenbuhl and Elizabeth (Bessie) Pope, both life-long residents of that part of West Virginia. Mary graduated from Doddridge County High School in West Union and West Virginia Business College in Clarksburg. In 1951 she married Joseph Anthony Gissy, whom she had met at a square dance three years earlier. They had their first daughter, Karen, while Joe was attending West Virginia University, majoring in Forestry. His first job as a forester brought them to White Springs, FL where Michael was born. They then transferred to Waycross, GA where Jimmy, Cindy and Denise were born. Mary and Joe then moved their family to Starke, FL in 1960 where Timmy and Donald were born. Joe worked for Container Corporation of America and they became active members of St. Edwards Catholic Church, American Legion Post 56, Bradford Food Pantry and many other community organizations. Once Donald began school, Mary returned to the working world and became the principal’s secretary at the newly opened Bradford Middle School where she spent the next 36 years. Mary retired at the age of 73 and spent her remaining years continuing her active involvement in church, neighborhood and community. In 2008 she and Joe moved to Dunnellon, FL to be closer to their children.
She was preceded in death by Joe, her loving husband of 62 years and is survived by all of their seven children; daughter, Karen Johnson (Jodie) Gainesville, FL; son, Michael (Sonja Biggs) Orlando, FL; son, Jimmy (Brenda Bordo) Orlando FL; daughter, Cindy Merrilees (Jay) Fleming Island, FL; daughter, Denise Cahoon (Lonnie) Orlando, FL; son, Timmy (Kay Castro) Orlando, FL and son, Donald (Susan Robinson) Crystal River, FL. The seven children gave her 17 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.
A Catholic Funeral Mass will be held on Saturday, September 21 at 10am at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church at 7525 S. US Hwy. 41, Dunnellon, FL. (352-489-3166). A Celebration of Life will be held at 11:30am in the church social hall. In lieu of flowers the family requests that you spend some quality time with your family and loved ones.