CHASSELL - Mary Ellen Courchaine, formerly of Chassell and Escanaba, died peacefully on Feb. 16, 2013, surrounded by loved ones. She was 78 years old.
Mary Ellen graduated from Chassell High School and attended St. Scholastica College in Duluth, Minn.
She is survived by her loving husband of almost 59 years, Cletus; their children, Bob (Patty) Courchaine of Minnesota, Patti Vanlerberghe of Illinois, Christine (Steve) Koester of Oregon, Kathy Hayes of Iowa, Mary Vogel of Illinois, Jim (Donna) Courchaine of Michigan and John (Ann) Courchaine of Wisconsin; 19 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren.
Mary Ellen was a devoted wife and mother and loved creating a home where all could thrive. She loved to cook, garden, play the piano and was always ready for a game of cards with the kids.
In particular, she loved the home she created at the cottage on Chassell's Half Moon Beach which was handed down to her by her grandfather, William Cahoon. Her family lived there for six weeks every summer while the children were young, and it was the home she and Cletus shared following his retirement. They spent winters in Florida.
Her photographs of sunsets over Pike Bay show both her refined aesthetic sense and her appreciation for being able to live "On Golden Pond" (her words).
A celebration of Mary Ellen's life will be held this summer at the cottage.
The Crawford Funeral Home assisted the Courchaine family with arrangements.