Mary Ellen Downs Ogden

MARQUETTE, Mich. – Mary Ellen Downs Ogden, 62, passed away after a courageous battle with breast cancer, on September 8 , 2012 at her home in Discovery Bay, Calif.

Mary Ellen (Elle) was born in Marquette, Mich., on December 4, 1949, to Charles and Frances (Smedman) Downs. She attended St. Peter’s Grade School and Bishop Baraga Catholic High School. Mary continued her education at Northern Michigan University and graduated with a teaching degree in 1971.

In 1972, she moved to California where she worked for 30 years at Alvarado Elementary in Union City. Mary had a natural gift for working with children and especially enjoyed teaching second grade.

Mary Ellen was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002. Over the next 10 years she inspired many cancer survivors and was always confident that the Lord had plans for her.

Mary is survived by her daughter, Sheila (Michael) Ogden-Smith, and two granddaughters, Mackayla and Shyanne Smith of Discovery Bay, Calif.; her parents, Charles and Frances Downs (MCMCF, Ishpeming); one sister, Ann (Rick) Musgrove of Iron Mountain; four brothers, Tim (Sherry) of Marquette , Brian (Jenny) of Iron Mountain, Robert (Julie) of Marquette, and Paul (Donnie Sue) of Austin, Texas; and many special aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews.

Mary’s funeral was on Sept. 14, 2012, at Golden Hills Community Church and burial was at Union Cemetery in Brentwood, Calif.

In memory of her mom, Sheila will participate in the Avon Breast Cancer Walk on the anniversary of Mary’s death Sept. 8 , 2013, in Santa Barbara, Calif. If you would like to make a donation, you can go to their website Team: Dream Big; Sheila Ogden-Smith.