Mary B. Prekker
1926 - 2015
Mary Bernadette Suter was born on Sept 17, 1926 to Sophie and Joseph Suter in Clara City, Minnesota. Mary was one of six children raised in a devout Catholic family. Her father died in 1933 and Mary stepped up, helping to raise the other children. In 1943, she married Milton Prekker, her high school sweetheart, and their lifetime together began. They lived in Larimore, North Dakota owning their own jewelry and watch repair as their family grew. Following that they moved to Owatonna, Minnesota while Milton worked for Jostens. In 1962, Jostens moved the family to Santa Barbara, and they settled in Goleta in 1968.
Mary was a lifelong volunteer and gave her time and enthusiasm to the Catholic Church. She was a member of the Catholic Daughters of the Americas, the Ladies of Charity, and a devoted volunteer at both Guadalupe School as a girls’ athletic coach and St. Raphael’s School as “the Popcorn Lady.” Her gift to the Catholic community continued as the St. Vincent’s Gift Shop Coordinator throughout the 1990’s. Mary was also the Den Mother for her sons’ Boy Scout dens and Girl Scout Leader for her daughters’ troops. She was District Precinct Polling Manager in Goleta throughout many local and national elections.
Mary was very active and enjoyed every aspect of her life, including the sport of bowling. She bowled well into her eighties, once or twice bowling a 300 game at the Orchid Bowl and later Zodos. She helped start the St. Raphael’s bowling league in 1971, the longest standing league in the Santa Barbara area. Mary was on the “3 Strikes” bowling team who held the number one spot in this league for many years.
The last eight days of Mary’s life were spent at Serenity House surrounded by family and friends. The family would like to thank the nurses and staff at Serenity House for blessing us with their support and kindness.
Mary is survived by her husband of 71 years, Milton Prekker; five children, Barry Prekker of West Hollywood, Debra McRoberts (John) of Goleta, Patty Peters of Encinitas, Daniel Prekker of Goleta, and Jeffrey Prekker (Chelsea) of San Diego; three grandchildren, David, Nathaniel and Elise. She also leaves her surviving sister Rosanne Sechler (Henry) of Fairfax, VA as well as many other extended family and friends, especially Jerry Rutledge and Deborah Alliano, dear to her.
A mass in celebration of Mary’s life will be held at St. Raphael’s Catholic Church at 10a.m. on May 14, 2015. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to St. Raphael’s Church in Goleta, St. Vincent’s (The Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul) or Serenity House.