Mary Courter

Mary Courter Obituary

Eulogy for Mary Madeline Courter. 09/12/1963 – 06/03/2024
by Bruce Generotti

Good morning. I am Mary’s older brother Bruce, and I on behalf of her family, I would like to thank all of you for coming to Mary’s celebration of life. It is a celebration, because we all know how much Mary loved to have fun and celebrate. She taught us all about that.

Mary was a pro at the many roles she fulfilled in her life.

She was a daughter to Elmer and Betty, the fifth child and the baby of our family. She was the last to leave home. Growing up the rest of us thought she just got away with everything. Especially Rebecca. The oldest sister, who couldn’t look at a boy until she was 18. But our mom and Dad treasured her and so they did let her get away with almost everything.

Mary was and will always be our baby sister. I still remember the day she was born. Rebecca reminded me that my father made my mother wait to go to the hospital until school opened so he could drop us off on the way to the hospital – pretty bold move when the 5th kid is on the way. When he picked us up after school that day there was a cigar box in his front seat that said “It’s a Girl” and Rebecca was so thrilled because it was now two girls and three boys. The five of us with my parents and Nona grew up in a little house in Jessup. The three boys slept in the attic turned bedroom and Mary and Rebecca shared a a small bedroom next to our parents’ room. So, we were all very close in more ways than one! Mary was a cheerleader, basketball player and ran track in high school. She said she developed the strength in her legs by running up and down three fights of steps in our house to get things for us. Even as the youngest of the clan, Mary was always honest and forthright and never hesitated to tell her older sibs what she thought or point out when we were wrong, and you know she was usually right.

As a sister-in-law Mary always felt as deeply about all of you; as though you were her true brothers and sisters. She made everyone feel part of the family.

As an Aunt, or Zia as Mary liked to be called (Italian for Aunt) she loved all of her Nieces and nephews. Always taking the time to talk to them and understanding what they are like.

Mary was a steadfast loving Mom to Jake and Taylor. She loved you more than you or anyone can imagine. She LOVED taking you guys anywhere for sports and school. We know you will miss her beyond words but take solace in knowing she lives strong in you and she was very, very proud of you. Her eyes lit up when she got the opportunity to talk about you

As a spouse, Mary and Jeff were totally connected partners – the true definition of soul mates. I always thought to myself whenever we were with them that they were truly in love. Even after all of these years you would see them in a corner giggling with each other. Who else would go to Vegas to renew their vows in front of an Elvis impersonator. They shared their passions for Penn State, Eagles, Phillies, Flyers, Music Gambling and life in general. Mary made Jeff, and all of us better people.

I can go on for days about what it was like being her friend, but just look around at all of the people she has touched – from Childhood to adulthood – everyone is here. And oh, the stories we all have!

Mary developed long lasting friendships at our summer lake house on Moosic Lakes. She did a lot of growing up there. She learned how to swim and learned a lot of other things with her “lake friends” that she kept from mom and dad. The lake was always a gathering place for family and family fun was a regular thing; there were so many children who we were related to that “hung out” at the beach house from noon to 5:00pm, ate dinner and back again every evening “until the sun set,” our only clock. As time passed and her brothers and sister returned annually to “the lake,” to visit from wherever we may have lived, she always made the time to journey to the lake and played with her 10 nieces and nephews and then she and Jeff added 2 more kids to make it a dozen grandchildren for our parents.

Being at the lake was still a respite and a party place throughout her adult life and one she shared with her family.

Mary also enjoyed spending time with the Courter family in Stone Harbor. Reading her favorite novels on the beach with evening walks to Fred’s Tavern.
Life is molded by a few moments that last a life time. My life and Mary’s were shaped on a fateful day in my senior year at Valley View High School when I turned around in trig class and saw a friend filling out an application for Penn State. I asked him if he had an extra one and I ended up going to Penn State where I met my bride Linda and we learned how to bleed blue. When my parents and Mary came to visit me at Penn State she fell in love with the place. So, she also ended up also at PSU where she also met her soul mate Jeff and her lifelong Penn State friends. Taylor and Jake then went to Penn State. Mary and Jeff made a science out of going to games there. Be it Airbnb’s, hotels, Winnebago’s or just sleeping in their car, there are a lot of stories about those trips but rest assured they all ended with a laugh. I will always remember her saying, and she even had Alexa respond to it - now everyone get ready for this. “We Are”……

After college, my wife Linda hooked me up with a company you all might have heard of, Shared Medical Systems or SMS. When Mary finished PSU majoring in Logistics what better place was there for her to start her work career. It was a great place for Mary her to use the skills she acquired at PSU, and I don’t mean classroom skills. Now Jake and Taylor don’t listen to this. My sister knew how to have a good time. She was legendary. You never got into a drinking contest with her. If you did, you would be under the table long before she hit the wall.

Lately she acquired a passion for crafting. Using her Cricut Machine to crank out anything from etched glass to greeting cards and Phillies t-shirts. We went to a queen concert together and she made us all dated queen tees to mark the event.

My sister- in -law, Patty, Linda’s sister said it the best the other day. She said that the room lit up when Mary entered. She brought her big smile and optimism where ever she went.

Mary’s glass was always half full. Let’s all honor Mary by living that optimistic drive and determination to be joyful; and let’s spread that joy every day of our lives.

We Are!

Please send any additional photos to be added to

1 Comment

  1. Bonnie Urzen (Alunni)

    Thank you for sharing these photos. They brought back many great memories of times shared growing up with Mary. The memories you all shared with her will bring you comfort in the days ahead….

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