"Do not shed tears that I have died, but share joy that I have lived" – In her own words
Mrs. Mary Jean (Delycure) Tarantini, 77, a resident of Harvey's Lake, passed peacefully into Eternal Life Saturday evening at her residence with her family at her bedside, following a lengthy illness.
Born May 4, 1943 in Wilkes-Barre, Mary Jean was the loving daughter of the late Michael and Mary (Krempacky) Delycure. Her education began at the former Sacred Heart Slovak Parochial School, North Wilkes-Barre, and then became a member of the 1960 graduating class of the former Saint Nicholas High School. She furthered her formal education by obtaining her Bachelor of Arts degree from then, College Misericordia, Dallas. Mary Jean would later receive her Master of Science degree in education from the University of Scranton.
Mary Jean began her teaching career as a student teacher at West Wyoming High School. She was later hired as a physical education/health teacher and cheer leader advisor by Swoyersville High School.
From 1966 until her formal retirement in 2003, she was employed by the Wyoming Valley West High School as a social studies and physical education teacher. From 1972 until 2003 she also served as a World Cultures Honors teacher at Wyoming Valley West. Throughout her entire teaching career, Mary Jean maintained membership in the Wyoming Valley West Education Association, the P.S.E.A. and the N.E.A.
Previously, she was a lifetime member of the former Sacred Heart of Jesus Slovak Roman Catholic Church, North Wilkes-Barre until its closure, at which time she joined Our Lady of Victory Parish at Harvey's Lake.
She and her loving, devoted husband, David celebrated fifty-seven years of married life together this past May fourth.
Known as "Ms. T." or "Ms" by the Valley West community, Mary Jean served on many historical and educational foundations, committees and boards. This list includes the Wyoming Historical and Geological Society, Wyoming Valley West Educational Foundation (Vice President Emeritus) and the Sacred Heart Wilkes-Barre Foundation.
For thirteen straight years, honor students of her classes studied and researched local events and people to compete in The National History Day Contest. For these 13 years, Wyoming Valley West had placed at least one student among the top ten at National History Day. W.V.W. had also placed first or second in the "Outstanding School" category, surpassing ninety competing schools at state competition. Nationals were held in Washington, D.C. and at the University of Maryland where over 2000 students from coast-to-coast participated. The W.V.W. team won two National First Place awards with a project on the late Reverend Joseph Murgas. The team was coached by Mary Jean, earning her the "Pennsylvania History Day Teacher Merit".
After winning these awards, the students and Mary Jean formed the Reverend Joseph Murgas Historical Marker Committee. They applied for and secured a Pennsylvania Historical Marker honoring the Reverend Murgas based on evidence from the winning project. This marker is located at 601 North Main Street in Wilkes-Barre to this day. In 1990, Mary Jean was selected to be included in "Who's Who Among America's Teachers".
Mrs. Tarantini was preceded in death by her sister, Elaine Delycure Richie in 1983 and by an infant daughter, Maria Elizabeth Tarantini.
Left to cherish the wonderful memories they hold of her in addition to her husband David at home, are the couple's son, David Michael Tarantini, his wife Jill and their children, Jackson, Morgan and Michael of Harvey's Lake; Sisters-in-law, Miss Geraldine Tarantini, Wyoming and Mrs. Myra Tarantini of Plains; Numerous nieces, nephews, former colleagues and wonderful friends.
Mary Jean’s family would like to gratefully acknowledge the caring, compassionate professionalism of Visiting Angels and Residential Hospice, especially Joy, Mia and Joan who were so good to her and the family in her time of need.
Funeral services for Mrs. Tarantini will be held privately and at the convenience of her family with her funeral Mass in Our Lady of Victory Roman Catholic Church, Second Street, Harvey's Lake. The Reverend Father Daniel A. Toomey, pastor will serve as celebrant and homilist.
Interment with the Rite of Committal will be in the family lot of Sacred Heart of Jesus Roman Catholic Cemetery, Dorchester Drive, Dallas. There will be no formal visitation at this time.
In lieu of floral tributes, Mary Jean's family would be humbled if those wishing to send a monetary donation in her memory, kindly give consideration to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Foundation, 3401 Civic Center Boulevard, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104; www.chop.edu or to Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center, 1000 East Mountain Drive, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania 18711; www.Geisinger.org.
The North Wilkes-Barre location of the John V. Morris Family Funeral Homes Inc. is honored to care for our friend, Mary Jean and her family at this time.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Mary Jean (Delycure) Tarantini, please visit our floral store.