Mary's Story

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Mary Virginia Pagilero (Owens)
The Last of the Owens Girls Passes on March 20, 2017, in Carlsbad, Calif.
Burial at Arlington National Cemetery with her husband, Lt. Col. Gerald John Pagliero, will be July 28, 2017
Mary Virginia Pagliero was born in Lyford, Indiana to David and Nancy Ann (Hockett) Owens on June 4, 1918. Mary spent her early years in Lyford with her younger sister, June (Rendaci) and sisters Peg (Helms) and Anne (Adams). She and future husband, Gerald John Pagliero, graduated from Clinton High School. Mary graduated from Indiana State Teachers College and taught school in the Clinton area. Gerald joined the U.S. Army Air Corps as an officer. They married in Austin, Texas before Gerald left on missions abroad in World War II. Gerald and Mary raised three children as they travel to various Air Force bases in Illinois, Texas, California, Kansas, Colorado, and Hawaii. Mary was a dedicated military wife. During the years of military service, Mary loved travel, new adventures and entertaining friends. She enjoyed playing bridge and mahjong. Mary was always there for the children, attended school events and filled in for Dad during his long flight tours abroad. She loved all her homes and was fond of saying that she hated to leave the home she was in but always loved the next home more. The family kept their Indiana roots and always returned to visit family in Clinton and Lyford during summers and holidays.
Gerald retired as Lieutenant Colonel in the Air Force after 33 years of distinguished service. He and Mary continued to travel. In later retirement, they moved to Vista, California where they lived for over 20 years. Gerald and Mary enjoyed life and a loving 60-year marriage before Gerald passed in 2003 at age 85.
After Gerald's passing, Mary loved her garden, flowers, visits from grandchildren, friends and family. She was a long-time Cubs and Colts fan. Mary was a life-long member of Delta Theta Tau Sorority and enjoyed service as a Delt Sister for 80 years.
During the last 7 years, Mary enjoyed assisted living care and a wonderful life at Carlsbad-by-the-Sea Senior Community in Carlsbad, Calif. She made new friends and enjoyed sunny days relaxing and sharing stories of family, travel and the adventures of a full life well lived. Mary immensely enjoyed her young great-grandson, Brennen, 4-years old. Theirs was a special bond with frequent visits and joyful enthusiasm. Mary retained her memory and sparkling personality, spirit of love and gratefulness until her demise at 98 years. She enjoyed wonderful health and shared her wisdom and wit, spirit and humanity with all who were fortunate enough to know her. She continues to endow her legacy for love of family and adventure to others. She is sorely missed and deeply loved.
Lt. Col. Gerard John Pagliero was buried in Arlington National Cemetery with the highest military honors. He flew missions in W.W. II, Korea, in the Strategic Air Command during the Cold War and served in multiple tours in Vietnam. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and honored by Congressman Darrel Issa in 2003 for his valor and service to his country. Mary will join Gerald in burial at Arlington National Cemetery on July 28, 2017.
A Celebration of Life Service was held for Mary at Carlsbad-by-the-Sea, Carlsbad, CA on April 29, 2017. Friends and family gathered to remember, celebrate and share stories of Mary's inspiration and love.
Mary was predeceased by her husband Gerald, sisters Anne Adams (Joel), Peg Helms (Pete) and June Rendaci (Jim) and their husbands, nephews, Donald and David Helms and sisters-in-law Margaret Wiltermood and Anna Baum and their husbands. Mary is survived by her children, JoAnne Logan Goularte (Ronald) and family Ron Jr. and Lisa Goularte, Jerri Lynn Perriello, (Alex) and family, John Pagliero (JoAnn) and family member Raquel, granddaughters, Noelle Martin (Andrew) and Natalie Bishop (Adrian) and their mother Debbie Pagliero, great grandson Brennen Martin, nephews Jim Rendaci (Imedla) of Indianapolis and Fred Wiltermood of Terre Haute (Louise), and niece Deborah Craine (Allen), family relatives, Nicole Rendaci Fisher (Adam), Don Alan Helms (Shelly), Penny Helms Dubois (Lucien), David Helms (Monica) and the Helms' families, and Mary Francis Pagliero Popp (John) of Bloomington. Mary's family expresses thanks to Delta Theta Tau Sisters and the loving friends and care-providers at Carlsbad by the Sea, CA.
Published on July 1, 2017
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Arlington National Cemetery, July 28, 2017


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