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Mary OKaru

Obituary of Mary OKaru

On Saturday April 3rd, 2021, Mary E. Okaru also known as Mary Stovall and to those of us who loved her most Liz, Lizabet, Bebet, grandma, and of course mom, of Cortland, NY was guided along to her next journey by all those who went before her to the kingdom of our heavenly father. "Life doesn't come with a manual; it comes with a Mother." ~ Unknown Our hearts are totally and completely broken, our beautiful mother, grandmother, sister, auntie, and friend passed last night after fighting so very hard for her life after suffering a hemorrhagic stroke in late February. Mom has been our family's rock and for some of us our best friend, our motivation, our biggest cheerleader, and our everything! Our entire family has suffered an unbelievable loss of which we are not certain in this moment how we will ever be the same. Undoubtedly, we will not be the same in many ways we are sure, but in other ways we are confident we will grow even stronger as a family. Mom was many things to a great many of you, friend, sister, jokester, confidant, counselor, advisor, partner in crime, and so much more. I know your hearts are just as broken as ours. We ask that you hold us in your hearts during this difficult time and that you hold all of your fond memories of my mother near and dear to your hearts. Mom loved so many of you so please know that. We love you mom, and we are all just simply lost without you. But we are all gonna try! Our hope is to persevere as a family of Mary's daughters, sons, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, and friends in true Mary fashion, because It has been a true badge of honor being apart of such a wonderful soul. Now for the basics: Our mother, Mary was born on August 3rd, 1948 in NY, New York the daughter of the late Alfred A. Stovall & the late Claradine Strickland, and the stepdaughter of the late Mary Stovall. Mom was a lover of so many things and of so many people in her life. She could woo a boardroom just as quickly as she could woo a biker at the Cobblerock! She simply fit in everywhere she went and as you will come to see touched so many lives. Mom graduated from Broome Community Collage with a degree in food sciences and nutrition, she was an amazing cook and a jack of all trades. In fact, we referred to her as our own personal "MacGyver" because if it needed fixing, she was always the one able to fix it! Mom loved being outside on our 48 acres of land in Blodgett Mills NY, and she loved traveling the country with her best friends and children. If there was a road trip to be had she was always willing to be your co-pilot. Mom was and will always be a Brothy women bound for adventure! Mom worked for a number of organizations through out the years here in our home town which included: Green Thumb, The Cortland Co. Nutrition Program, and of course within the catering department ( ASC) at SUNY Cortland. Mom is survived by her beloved children daughter Carol Hill of Gorton, NY, & her son Alfred Okaru of Blodgett Mill, NY ; her grandchildren Ariel Corl, Elijah Griep, Nikya Cook, Adellah Okaru, and Donovan Okaru, and she is predeceased by her granddaughter Cassandra Elizabeth Hill; Sisters Patricia Stovall, Josephine Stovall, brothers, Robert Stovall, Ronald Pointer, and Rayford Pointer, as well as a large number of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends ( Ida Jones, Ruth Davidson-Gordon, Ella Mae Jenkins, Karen Robinson ) and so, so, many more we wish we could list. Calling hours will be held from 4:00 to 7:00PM on April 8, 2021 at Wright-Beard Funeral Home 9 Lincoln Ave, Cortland, NY 13045. A celebration of her life and funeral will be held on April 9, 2021 at 11:00 am at the same location and is open to all who loved her (within state capacity). We will be following all NYS Guidelines regarding capacity and social distancing. A video streaming of the services can be found on To offer online condolences please visit