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Mary "Marie" Josephine Collopy

Mary "Marie" Josephine Collopy
  • September 8, 1926 - December 12, 2020
  • formerly of Battle Creek, Michigan

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“To the family of Marie,We extend our deepest condolences on your loss. We loved seeing Marie at Mass throughout the years. She watched our son...Read More »
1 of 4 | Posted by: Teresa Durham - Battle Creek

“My condolences to all of of Marie's family. I was privileged to have sung in the St. Philip Choir with her for many years in the 90s and early 2000s...Read More »
2 of 4 | Posted by: Chris Borawski - Silver Spring, MD

“We enjoyed bringing Holy Communion to Bill and Marie for several years, at home, then at The Oaks. Marie was devoted to Bill, caring about him and...Read More »
3 of 4 | Posted by: Paul & Sharon Ohm - Battle Creek, MI

“Let me offer my sincere condolences to all of Marie's large family. Marie was a friend and a joy to know. I didn't know Marie as a young mother or...Read More »
4 of 4 | Posted by: Wanza Grantier - Battle Creek, MI


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Mary "Marie" Josephine (Kobza) Collopy aged 94, passed away on December 12, 2020, due to complications of Covid-19. Born to Emil and Elizabeth (Duhon) Kobza, Marie was raised on a Nebraska farm near the Czech community of Brainard. She was the sixth of twelve siblings: Rose, Alice, Emil, Margaret, Agnes, Marie (Mary), Bette, Gabriella, Helen, Bernard, Benedict, and Dorothy.

There were so many girls named Mary in her elementary school that the nuns decided Mary would be called Marie. Her siblings decided to call her Munch. After graduating from high school, Marie moved to Lincoln Nebraska, where she worked as a punch card operator. Thereafter, Marie would claim to have "worked in high tech" just like her son Tom and son-in-law John. Marie met her husband William "Bill" Collopy at a Catholic Newman Center dance at the University of Nebraska. Marie was under the mistaken impression that Bill was related to a Cornhusker football player by the same last name. She was also impressed by Bill's artistic talent.

Bill and Marie were married in 1951. After living briefly in Cheyenne and Cody Wyoming, they moved to Battle Creek Michigan. Bill became an arts educator and Marie raised six children all born within eleven years. When her youngest child was seven and her oldest starting college, Marie went back to school, attending Kellogg Community College where her husband was Head of the Fine Arts Department. Marie received a BA in Elementary Education from the Western Michigan University and then worked part-time as a substitute teacher. Marie and Bill were married for 67 years.

Marie was an active member of St. Joseph and St. Philip Catholic Church. Marie loved to sing and for many years was a cantor in the St. Philip choir where she was able to travel with the choir and perform in Prague. She also sang with the Battle Creek Community Chorus. Marie played bridge and bowled on a league team into her 70s. At 90 she was still singing in the choir. When her grandson attended college as a music major, Marie decided that he had gotten his talent from "her side".

Fortunately for her children, Marie only knew how to cook with farm fresh ingredients and often made homemade bread, donuts, pies and Czech pastries. (She did discover Hamburger Helper at some point so younger family members may not have the same point of view.) For many years she sewed all of her children's clothes and doll clothes, and continued to sew and quilt throughout her life. Marie loved visits from her grandchildren and their children, and tending her garden, growing iris and Sweet William.

Marie assisted Bill with his many commercial art projects and her tile work can be seen in the Battle Creek YMCA. In the 80s, Bill and Marie designed and built their own home together.

Marie was preceded in death by her husband William "Bill" Collopy, her parents Emil and Elizabeth (Duhan) Kobza, brothers Emil and Benedict "Ben" and sisters Rose, Margaret "Marge", Agnes "Aggie" and Gabriella "Gub". Marie is survived by her children: Kathleen (Michael) Marks, Palm Harbor Fl, Barbara (John) Collopy O'Halloran, Seattle WA, Patricia (Dave) Collopy Mullin, South Haven MI, Teresa Crumpton, Portage MI, Tom (Jeanette) Collopy, Cary NC, Mary Collopy, Battle Creek MI; her grandchildren, Josh Brady, Detroit MI, Sarah (Steve) Brady, Portage Mi, Leah (Travis) Sleight, Augusta MI, Maggie (Jeff) Stockwell, Kalamazoo Mi, Patrick (Caitlin) Crumpton, Chicago IL, Nathan (fiancé Lynette) Crumpton, Boston MA, Diane (Josh Kinard) Collopy, Cary NC, Michelle (Chris) LeBlanc, Cary NC, Nicholas Milton, Miami FL, and Patrick O'Halloran, Los Angeles CA; her great-grandchildren, Abbigayle "Abbie" Brown, Battle Creek MI, Addison and Harper Stockwell, Ava and Aidan Sleight; her twin sister Elizabeth "Bette" Bloom, Phoenix AZ, brother Bernard "Bernie" (Pat), Omaha NB, sisters Alice Lipton, MD, Helen (Dick) Dufek, David City NB and Dorothy "Dodie" (John) Lavicky, Dwight NB; her brother-in-law Bernard J. Collopy, Phoenix AZ; and her many cherished nieces and nephews and their children and grandchildren.

Due to Covid-19 Restrictions, a celebration of Marie's life will be held at a later time. In lieu of flowers or donations, we ask that you help protect the lives of all caregivers, especially in honor of the caregivers Marie was so grateful to have had with her in her last months, weeks and hours at Friendship Village Nursing Home: please wear a mask and follow community health directives. Arrangements by Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care. Personal messages for the family and/or favorite memories of Marie may be placed at www.farleyestesdowdle.com.

Nebraska Farm Girl's

Voice Rises in God's Chorus

Alone With Angels

- Patrick Crumpton