Mary Lou (Ely) Ekstrom, 65, passed away Wednesday, July 3, 2019 at home surrounded by family in Binghamton, NY. She was pre-deceased by her parents, Robert F. and Mary Lou Ely. She is survived by her husband, Peter Ekstrom; three children, Evan (Cassandra), Suzanne, and Emily Ekstrom; beloved and beautiful granddaughter Reija; favorite sister and brother-in-law Patricia and Ronald Komsa; and several brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, and cousins. After graduation from Adelphi University, Mary Lou was a dedicated employee at IBM for 24 years and then continued working at Cadence Design Systems until her retirement in 2017. She and Peter married in 1975 and moved to Binghamton in 1978. Mary Lou was a faith formation teacher for over 20 years at St Christopher’s and St Francis of Assisi parishes and in 2015 won the Sr. Katie Eiffe Seeds of Faith Award for her dedication. She loved singing and was a member of the church choir. Mary Lou battled breast cancer in 1996, and colon cancer from 2012 until her death. Throughout her life, Mary Lou was known as a caring, intelligent, independent person. She was socially active, paying close attention to ways to make the world a better place for everyone; donating to causes she felt would make a difference and actively helping by lending a hand to those less fortunate in her community and around the world. She had varied interests including, reading, sewing, singing, and playing piano and guitar. She was an incredible wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, co-worker, and friend. She will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved her.
A Funeral Mass will be celebrated Thursday 10:30 am at St. Francis of Assisi Church, 1031 Chenango Street, Binghamton. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery, Johnson City. The family will receive friends at church Thursday from 9 am until Mass time at 10:30 am. Per Mary Lou’s wishes, expressions of sympathy may take the form of a donation to the Southern Tier Homeless Coalition or Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.