Mary Urlocker - Rest in Peace

The Last Breath


My mother was no longer conscious this morning.  Each of us were in with her in the final hours, holding her hand, speaking softly.  I put on some Jimmy Cliff music that she liked and sang quietly to her the song "Many Rivers to Cross."

Many rivers to cross
But I can't seem to find my way over
Wandering I am lost
As I travel along the white cliffs of dover

Many rivers to cross
And it's only my will that keeps me alive

A few hours later, her color was fading.  Her breathing was still erratic with pauses of ten to fifteen seconds between breaths.  All of us gathered by her side.  My sister Karen said the rosary along with my father and my wife.  Two nights ago she had called for Karen and whispered "hail, hail" asking for the rosary.  Tim and I held her hands.  Kids were outside playing.  After one decade of the rosary, that is, ten Hail Mary's, she stopped breathing.  The nurse checked and there was no pulse.  I left her side and I held my wife.  Everyone cried. And then after another two minutes that seemed like an hour, my mother gasped for air.  She was always a fighter and she would not let go. 

She began breathing again, still erratic, still noisy.  We waited.  And then Karen resumed the rosary.  When she completed all five decades of the rosary about ten minutes later, my mother finally let go.  We waited a couple of minutes to be sure.  We said our final goodbyes.  My father kissed her for the last time.  And then the nurse turned off the oxygen pump and everything was quiet.



God now has the most special angel of all.

Donna Martin

Bob: My condolences to you and your loving family. Mary will always be a shining example to all of us in the years to come. She fought hard and only when she was ready did she let go at the end. Sincerely, Donna

Pauline Hartington

We have lost a great and gallant friend and the heavens have gained a shining star. Rest in Peace Mary

beverly Rettinger

I am out of town and praying daily for Mary and the family. No more suffering for dear Mary, she is in a better place.

The beauty in this web-site shows the kind of family she raised and was no doubt very proud of. Bless each and every one of you for sharing your life with us during this very sad time.

May God bless and keep you.

Beverly Rettinger

Lynn Lust

Bob:I am so sorry. My condolences to eveyone in your family. Mary was one of the most special ladies I have ever known. She will always be in my heart. I will miss that wonderful smile, but know she is smiling right now. Love, Lynn

Dale & Family

Shawn, Lynn & Family,

Our thoughts are with you all during this difficult time. We are just so sorry for your loss.

Lots of Love, Dale & Cameron, Kelly & Dan, Chris & Cory

Christy and Will Schreiber

We have been thinking about you and now your Mom is at peace and in a wonderful place. She can now look down at all of you with Astra and smile...... We love you.
Christy and Will Schreiber


I am Manoj from India and have been following this blog. I lost my mother to Ovarian Cancer in Nov 2005. She was a fighter just like your mom, fought on bravely for 8 years with 2 recurrances.I see a lot of similarities between our mothers although they were continents apart.

I am positive that your mom is at peace now, free from the physical pain and out there beaming with pride for she had her family by her side till her very end loving her dearly. Its the biggest gift children can ever give their mom's and you and your family have given her that.

She is truly a blessed soul and I am sure she will always be your family's angel looking after you with the same love.

I am sure her memories which are nothing but a celebration of her life will give you the strength to live life just as how you loving mom would have wanted you to lead.

Manoj (From India).

shirley fletcher

My condolences to the urlocker family and thanks,especially to you zack for sharing her story. I now see mary in her golf cart driving the fairway to heaven, her bra hanging on her 9 iron(airing out), and humming. rake the sand traps for us mary, we'll see you again. we'll miss her but she will always be with us. shirley fletcher


My sincere condolences to you and your family. It is clear that your mother has touched the lives of many. Thank you for sharing her journey.

Marcie (in MD)

Jannette (Urlocker) Jeromy, Curtis and Kayla TenHag

Dear Uncle Bob, Karen, Michael, Mark, Tim and Shawn,

Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. You were blessed with a wonderful wife and mother. You can be sure Aunt Mary has been welcomed in Heaven with open arms by all that knew her, especially Paddy.

Love Jannette, Jeromy, Curtis and Kayla

Bertrand Matthelié

Zack, je te prie d'accepter mes plus sincères condoléances. J'ai lu ton blog de façon régulière et été extrêmement ému par tes descriptions et commentaires.
Alfred de Musset a dit "Ce n'est quelquefois qu'en perdant ceux qu'on aime qu'on sent combien on les aimait", mais la force de ton amour pour ta maman s'est sentie très distinctement et elle a pu savoir combien ses enfants l'aimaient. Mais je sais qu'il n'y a malheureusement rien qui puisse être dit pour soulager la douleur.


Jeff Wiss

Zack: When my Dad died (it's hard to believe it's been 24 years), I was at the grocery store the day of the funeral buying some food and drinks because we were having people to the house after the funeral.

I ran into someone who worked in my Dad's office and he was quite jovial and said, "Hey Jeff, I hear Jack finally made it home."

Although his jovial tone was a bit shocking because I was so depressed, his words actually gave me great comfort a few moments later. I realized that life is a journey with joys, sadness, comfort, pain, successes, failures, and uncertainty. But, whether we're aware of it or not, we're all on the path to our ultimate destination of "going home."

Our houses change over time, but the ultimate "home" is where we end up at the end of our physical lives - where we achieve our ultimate peace. If we're lucky, the final leg of that journey is helped along by people we love, just as you and your family did for your Mom. You are truly blessed to have been there to help your Mom and to hold her hand on her final journey.

So all I can say is, "Hey, Mark, I hear that Mary finally made it home."

The Santoro Family

Tim: So sorry to hear about your mom's passing. She was a beautiful lady and touched many lives. She will live in your hearts forever. Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Kelly, the boys, your Dad and your entire family. God bless.

Jean, John, Emily, Maggie, Jack & Peter Santoro (neighbors in AZ)

Boel Larsen

Zack, my thoughts are with you and your family. Reading your blog reminds me of all the hours I spent with my father at the hospice 10 years ago, constantly surrounded by relatives, friends, music, candles and flowers. It was the most difficult of times but also among the most important things I've done.

I was talking to a friend only the other day, telling her how much I still miss my Dad, and she said "So what is it you want to tell him?". I replied "Nothing, really, I'd just like to hang out with him a bit". You'll miss hanging out with your Mom too, but it seems as if you've told her all the important things while there still was time to do so. That's what really counts.


Helen Hayes

Mike, Frances, Ruby, Agnes and all the family -
Please accept our condolences of the loss of your mother Mary. You are all in our thoughts and prayers.

Zack - The blog you have created is a wonderful gift to your family and the memory of your mother. As times passes it will continue to highlight the wonderful mother she was and the strength of the Urlocker clan. It also commemorates what a strong brave soul she was.

All our love,

Helen, Jason, Michael & Hugh Hayes

Flo Baldridge

Dear Mary,
You were a ray of sunshine in my life and also to all who had the priviledge of calling you "Friend." God gave you many talents but the ability to make everyone feel special and happy was your greatest. I have to believe that you are now having those feelings with HIM.
Bob, the love and devotion you two shared was beautiful and I trust that will ease your pain.
Thank you, Mary, for having been a part of my life. With love, Flo Baldridge

Linda D

We're deeply sorry for your loss!
Linda & David

marci likens

Bob and family,
I understand your loss, but also know that Mary's pain is over. I will always treasure her quick wit and infectious laugh and know that you have millions of memories to fill the huge ache in your hearts.

George and Gerry Henderson

Dear Bob and Family: You have suffered a terrible loss but have handled it with such courage. Please know that we are thinking of you at this time and praying that you will be able to carry on. Never lose the memory of your wife/mother as she was the sustaining tree for you to grow from. Love George and Gerry

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