Mary Elizabeth Hoover was born in Maplesville, Alabama, on December 25, 1949. This Christmas baby was a special gift to Willie Mae Hawthorn (formerly Anderson), and was affectionately known as “Putney” and “Baby Elizabeth.” Mary gave her life to the Lord Jesus Christ and was baptized at the age of thirteen. She attended New Convert Elementary School followed by Chilton County Training High School, where she graduated in 1968. A week after her high school graduation, Mary set her sights on relocating to the big city, Chicago, Illinois.
Upon relocating to Chicago, she began her early employment at Montgomery Ward’s Customer Service department, where she discovered her love for business administration. In order to enhance her business skills, Mary decided to accept a role at LaSalle Extension University, where she processed student tuition payments. After gaining valuable business experience, Mary finally gained her corporate role at First National Bank of Chicago, where her banking career flourished in various areas of administrative, security processing, capital market, and employee training roles.
She led a full professional and personal life in Chicago, where she met and married Emerson Hoover in 1976. To this union, two cherished daughters were born: LaToscha R. Hoover and Candace M. Hoover. Mary and Emerson were divorced in 1987. However, her lifelong dream of being a mom was evident in the love, care, and dedication she gave in raising her girls to be confident and competent women of God. She enjoyed daily morning cups of coffee, cooking (especially for the holidays), and watching old western TV shows.
Mary was also actively involved in ministry over the years as an usher at Sweet Holy Spirit Church and as part of the finance team and pastoral assistant team at Prayer and Faith Outreach Ministries in Chicago, Illinois. She also volunteered in the health care sector in various capacities and facilities, including the Little Company of Mary Hospital in Evergreen Park, Illinois. Before departing this earthly world, Mary was a member of the Lighthouse Church of All Nations in Alsip, Illinois.
She served and showed hospitality to all those whom she encountered, as a greeter, until she could physically no longer do so.
The Lord called her home to be with Him on April 20, 2023. She was preceded in death by her beloved mother, Willie Mae Hawthorn; grandmother, Aressa Anderson; grandfather, Jessie Anderson; great- aunt, Essie Mae Anderson; aunt, Minnie Lee Walker (Billy); and nephew, Ceasar Johnson.
Mary leaves to cherish her memories: daughters, LaToscha R. Hoover and Candace M. Hoover; sisters, Juanita Johnson and Myra Jill Williams; niece and birthday twin, Donna Johnson; great- nieces, KaNeesha Johnson and Chanel Johnson; and a host of other extended family and friends.
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