WALNUT CREEK, Calif. — Elizabeth Strope, beloved mother and grandmother who lived her 78 years full of dignity and grace, passed away unexpectedly in peace on Saturday, July 2, 2011.
Elizabeth was born in Gloucester on Jan. 10, 1933. She graduated from Gloucester High School in 1950, before moving to California to work and raise her family.
Elizabeth was a 47-year resident of Walnut Creek, and enjoyed participating in activities at St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Walnut Creek where she worked in the rectory and was a Eucharistic minister. She also enjoyed working as a volunteer at John Muir Hospital, and coaching for the Walnut Creek Aquanuts Synchronized Swimming Team in the mid-1970s. Her 20-year career as a travel agent in Walnut Creek, Concord, and Martinez gave her many trips to exciting places around the world.
Elizabeth was preceded in death by her husband, Ernest Edward Strope; parents, Urho John Pistenmaa and Mary Winifred Pistenmaa; and sister, Patricia Faye McHugh. Survivors include her brother, John Elliott Pistenmaa of Gloucester; children, Karen (David) Gore of Walnut Creek, Calif., Sheryl (Lynn) Harmston of Sutter Creek, Calif., Michael Strope of Austin, Texas, Susanne Ayer of Litchfield, N.H., Monica (John) Brennan of Danville, Calif., and Judith Mackay of Concord, Calif. Elizabeth was the loving grandmother of Patrick Shannon, Maria Shannon, Elana Ayer, Molly Fowler, Kevin Mackay, Paul Holden and Michael Holden; and proud great-grandmother of Tyler Shannon and Kailey Shannon. She is also survived by many aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews.
ARRANGEMENTS: A memorial Mass will be celebrated on Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2011 at 9:30 a.m. in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church, Gloucester. Family and friends are cordially invited. Burial will be held in Seaside Cemetery in Lanesville. Arrangements are by the Greely Funeral Home, 212 Washington St., Gloucester.