Mary Elizabeth Kretz

April 11, 1932 – July 18, 2015

Mary Elizabeth Kretz (Byrne), known to her family and friends as Meb, passed peacefully at the age of 83 in McMinnville, OR on July 18, 2015, after a long battle with Parkinson's. Meb was born in Newburgh, NY on April 11, 1932 to Leo and Sally Byrne. She married Frederick Kretz on August 5, 1961 and went on to enjoy 54 years of a loving marriage. Meb graduated from Ladycliff College, NY with a BA in Education and later earned her Masters degree in Elementary Education at New York State University. Meb taught 1st grade in New York until they moved to Essex Junction, VT, where Fred worked for IBM, and she taught 1st grade at Essex Elementary School for a total career of 24 years

. Meb and Fred raised 4 children in Essex Center, Vermont and were devoted Catholics attending St. Pius X. After retirement they moved to McMinnville, OR. Meb and Fred enjoyed their retirement traveling extensively to Europe as well as back east to visit their grandchildren. Meb is survived by her husband, Frederick Kretz, son Thomas Kretz and spouse Catherine Kretz, son Stephen Kretz, daughter Kathleen Kretz, daughter Amy Kretz and spouse Matt Staples, grandchildren Kayla (23), Haley (22), Katarina (19), Erika (16), Maxwell (14), Reuben (10), Felix (7), brother Tom Byrne and sister Nancy Bury.

A service will be held at the St. James Catholic Church in McMinnville on Friday, July 24 at 11:00 am with a lunch reception to follow. Meb loved people, playing cards, reading, traveling and spending time with her friends and family. Her spunky zest for life will be greatly missed. In lieu of flowers, donations in Meb's name may be made to the National Parkinson's Foundation. To leave online condolences, visit