Mary "Mary Jo" Elizabeth Hall Berryman passed away peacefully at age 98, with the support of Elara Caring hospice and the wonderful staff of Brewster Place Health Center, Topeka KS on February 11, 2021.
Mary Jo was born Sep 20, 1922 in Kearny NJ, the daughter of Earle Winthrop Hall and Bernice Grace Dayton. In her youth, Mary Jo loved to dance, especially ballet and participated in many activities and sports. She graduated from Westfield High School and earned her bachelor’s degree in Education from Russell Sage College in Troy, NY. It was there that she met Harold Linwood “Lindy” Shipley, Jr. who was studying Aeronautical Engineering at nearby Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Mary Jo and Lindy married on May 27, 1944 at her home in Westfield, NJ. As a Navy wife, she followed her husband on assignments, living in Florida, Maryland, Texas and California. They had two children, Harold “Hal” L Shipley in 1947 and Pamela C Shipley in 1954. Sadly, Lindy was admitted with leukemia to the former Bethesda Naval Hospital in MD, where he died on Jan 24, 1955.
Mary Jo moved to Falls Church, Virginia, where Lindy’s parents helped to raise her two young children. While working as an elementary school teacher and teaching Sunday school at the local Methodist church, Mary Jo obtained a master’s degree from George Washington University.
At her 25th Westfield High School reunion, Mary Jo “re-met” her high school friend William “Bill” Berryman. During high school, Bill and Mary Jo played the role of sweethearts in the senior play, where Bill kissed Mary Jo’s hand in the final scene. After their reunion, the couple married on Dec 23, 1965 in Alexandria, VA where Mary was teaching. Then they built a home in Colt’s Neck, NJ, near Bill’s job.
Mary Jo was an energetic, generous and positive person, who loved her family and found joy in everything that she did. In VA, she joined the local chapter of American Association of University Women, serving as president for a time. She loved big band music, ballroom dancing and pursued her talents in painting, sewing, needlework and gardening. Family members received many of her beautiful handmade items.
Following Bill’s retirement from Johnson and Johnson as a packaging engineer, Mary Jo and Bill moved to Platte SD on Aug 8, 1988, to be near her beloved sister, Sally and Brother-in-law Bill Bobertz. They also cherished Sally and Bill’s daughter Margaret “Marti” Bobertz and her husband Bill Tooley, who helped Mary Jo and Bill whenever they needed assistance.
Mary Jo belonged to the South Dakota Mayflower Society, the Platte Woman’s Club, and volunteered at the Platte Library as she had a love of reading. Mary Jo and Bill visited places in Hawaii, California, Minnesota, Kansas and the Black Hills, SD.
In March 2014, Bill and Mary Jo moved to Touch Mark assisted living in Sioux Falls, SD. After Bill passed away on December 19, 2016, Mary Jo needed full-time care for her progressing dementia. The family chose Brewster Place in Topeka. With the assistance of great-niece Jerusha Tooley, Mary Jo moved to Topeka where her great-niece Mariah Scott and her family reside.
Mary Jo is survived by her children, Hal Shipley of TX and his wife Jan Meeks; and Pam and her husband Jim Requa of NJ; and grandson Ward Ronan of NJ and his wife Breanne Long. A grandson, Uriah Hubert, preceded her in death.
As per Mary Jo's wishes, cremation has taken place and no memorial services are planned. Private inurnment will take place at a later date.
Dove Southeast Chapel, 2843 SE Minnesota Ave. is assisting the family.
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