Family Tribute:Mary Domenca Bonsassin Stanley ('Bony') - November 19, 1947 - September 11. 2001.
Born to Maria & Andrea Bonassin in Pola, Yugoslavia as it was known then.
The Bonassin family fled across Europe after WWII and emigrated to America. The family settled in Rocford, Illinois.
Growing up, Mary was an eager and top student who also starred outside the classroom. She was an accordion virtuoso. She attended ballet classes - she enjoyed dancing. She also loved crocheting, gardening, and roller-skating.
In the 60's, Mary returned to NYC where she met her husband Paul in 1966. They have been together ever since, marrying in 1982.
Besides being a scholar, Mary was ambitious, focused, a workaholic and read 'everything' which, combined with her interest in computers, led to her position as Vice President of the Information Technology department of Marsh & McLennan.
She was a confirmed, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable New Yorker who loved to take visiting family and friends on tours and loved to tour herself when she took time out for vacations.
Mary leaves her husband Paul, her sisters Lucia and Theresa, her brother Mario, 7 nieces & nephews, 2 great -nieces & nephews, her 'New York' family - too big to enumerate, as well as her many, many, many friends, and a little girl who called her 'grandma'.
Those are the facts. But we all know that there was something very special about Mary.
EVERYONE proclaims that she was kind and gentle - generous and giving. She charmed the world. She was instantly likeable; unassuming - 'real'. She was patient, tactful, a good listener. She put at ease - made people happy - naturally. -And she was shy.
She is irreplaceable and unforgettable. She was - is - 'angelic'.
Miss you, miss you, miss you; Everything I do Echoes with the laughter And the voice of You. You're on every corner, Every turn and twist, Every old familiar spot Whispers how you're missed.
Miss you, miss you, miss you! Everywhere I go There are poignant memories Dancing in a row. Silhouette and shadow Of your form and face, Substance and reality Everywhere displace.
Oh, I miss you, miss you! God! I miss you, Girl! There's a strange, sad silence 'Mid the busy whirl, Just as tho' the ordinary Daily things I do Wait with me, expectant for a word from You.
Miss you, miss you, miss you! Nothing now seems true Only that 'twas heaven Just to be with You.
-David CoryMary Stanley was 18 and new to Manhattan when she met her future husband, Paul, in 1966 at an East Village nightclub called The Dom.
Back then, The Dom -- a discotheque with multimedia spectacles like Andy Warhol's Exploding Plastic Inevitable -- was about as far as you could get from from her working-class roots in Rockland, Ill.
That was just fine with her. 'She came here for a visit to see a friend and fell in love with it,' said her husband, whom she married in 1982. She never looked back, settling first in Manhattan and later moving to Jamaica, Queens.
Unlike many who seek their fortune in New York, Mary Stanley actually found it. At 53, Stanley, who never held a college degree, was a vice president in charge of computer systems at Marsh & McLennan.
'I became the house husband and she became the vice president,' said her husband, who was 14 years older and retired early because of health reasons.
The role reversal suited them both. 'She couldn't cook a lick,' he said with a laugh. Instead, she worked long hours, often on the weekends, to master her job. 'Nobody ever taught her those machines,' he said. 'She learned on the job, and she came home and practiced.'
Stanley's capacity for work was matched by her thoughtfulness. She didn't know Eddie and Bunny Johnson, longtime friends of her husband, all that well, but when their home was gutted by fire in 1987, Stanley came over each weekend for nine months to help repair the damage. The three became fast friends, and the two couples took vacation trips together to the Bahamas and the Poconos.
On trips to see family in Illinois and Canada, Stanley was a joy to host, said Lynn Berry of Brampton, Ontario, wife of her nephew Mario. 'She was very generous, and she had the most beautiful smile,' Berry said. 'It just took up her whole face.'
Stanley was in her office on the 90th floor of Tower One Sept. 11 when the first plane slammed into the tower. Her body has not been found; a memorial service was held for her last weekend at the Marriott Hotel near LaGuardia Airport.
'She was the sweetest person you'd want to know,' said her husband, who never thought that his wife would die first. 'She was so nice it was unreal.'
(c) 2001 Newsday, Inc. Reprinted with permission. www.newsday.com