Mary Ellen MacKarsie Page, age 103, of Alexandria and Lexington died on Sept. 27, 2020, at Kendal Continuing Care Community in Lexington.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Thad S. Page, Jr.
Surviving family include two sons, John “Jack” Page (wife, Margie), of Lexington, Charles “Mac” Page (wife, Cynthia) of Alexandria, and five grandchildren, Allison Lowry, Ashley Rath, Virginia Trovato, Clinton Page, and Martha Page; and five great-grandchildren.
Born in Avonmore, Pa., in 1917, she was the daughter of Charles Morris and Lorena French MacKarsie. Education was very important to her family thus Mary Ellen graduated from Harrisonburg Teachers College now James Madison University in 1939 and taught in Alexandria until she married Thad Page in 1941. She returned to the classroom in 1950 and taught special education classes in Fairfax County. She earned her master’s of education from Gallaudet University in 1974. She passed the importance of education to her grandchildren and assisted and encouraged all of them to earn post-graduate degrees.
After retirement she started a second career with the Elder Crafters of Alexandria where, she became the consultant and instructor for needle work, saleswoman, and knitter of custom Christmas stockings. During the winter and fall she could be found stitching while watching her favorite college football and basketball teams, JMU, NC State, and UVa. The summer would find her at Atlantic Beach, N.C., entertaining her grandchildren at Neverrest beach cottage.
Mary Ellen was a woman of firsts. While at JMU she was the founder and first president of Tri Sigma sorority; after teaching in Fairfax County she was selected as the first Director for the Federal Title I Program; and as a member of Calvary Presbyterian Church she was the first woman to be elected Ruling Elder.
In 2004 she came to live at Kendal at Lexington. Here she enjoyed making friends while playing bridge and stitching needlework. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Kendal Employee Appreciation Fund.
Interment to be held on Friday, October 2, 2020 at Mount Comfort Cemetery in Alexandria, Virginia.
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