Heaven gained another angel on May 8, 2017 with the passing of a beautiful soul – Mary Pompeo Lewis Sparks.
Mary was born May 28, 1922 on the family farm outside of Maxwell, NM. She was the last of 9 children born to Italian immigrants Carlo and Adelina (Tollis) Pompeo.
Mary’s family meant everything to her, she loved all of her brothers and sisters, many nieces nephews and cousins. But most important in her life were her children and grandchildren and her love for her savior Jesus Christ.
Mary also had a life-long love of school and teaching – she herself started the 1st grade when she was only 4 years old, after begging her mother to let her go to school like her sister Rosie who was in the 2nd grade. She loved school from day one and couldn’t believe her great fortune when her parents were able to send her to college. She attended Normal University in Las Vegas, NM and married fellow student Dick Lewis, a football player from TX. During the summer of 1941 the superintendent of Maxwell schools called her and asked her to teach that fall; she didn’t have her degree yet but in those days it didn’t matter. Thus, her teaching career began. She completed her degree during the summers and taught school for the next 42 years.
Her first daughter, Shirley, was born in 1943 while her husband was in the Army. Mary and Shirley lived with Grandma and Grandpa Pompeo in Maxwell until the end of the war. Their second daughter, Lynn, was born nearly 11 years later. Mary married one more time and although she lived alone for the last 45 years of her life, she was always happy and kept a positive outlook on life.
She touched many many lives – students, friends and relatives. She always said she had a great life; she was loved by many.
Mary is survived by her daughter Shirley Lewis of Arlington, TX and grandsons Brian (Kami) Anderson of Arlington, TX, Michael (Blythe) Anderson of Reno, NV, and Todd Anderson of Germany, daughter Lynn Lewis Johnson (Ken) of Albuqueque, grandson Kurtis (Chris) Johnson of Alexandria VA, and granddaughter Kaley (Victoria) Johnson-Gonzales of ABQ and their children Adella, Mya and Fabian. She is also survived by great-grandchildren Drew (Jade) Anderson and their 2 children Charley and Landry, of Arlington, TX, Meagan Anderson of Arlington, TX, Sophie Anderson of Reno, NV, and Macall Smith of Albuquerque. She is also survived by sister Rosie Pompeo Purvis of Peoria, IL and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
She was preceded in death by her parents Carlo and Adelina Pompeo and brothers, Jim, Quin, Sam, Earl, Charlie and Antonio Pompeo, and sister Louise Pompeo Castellini.
The family wants to thank Ambercare for the loving care and support they gave Mary the past year; her nurses Robin in Raton, and Sonya in Albuquerque were so compassionate and kind. Finally thank you to Morning Star Assisted Living in ABQ for making the last year of her life comfortable and filled with love….her family is forever grateful.
Memorial services will be Saturday May 13, 2017 at 2:00 P.M. at the First Baptist Church in Raton with pastor Mark Crotinger officiating.
In lieu of flowers please make donations to the charity of your choice.