Mary Ellen Hesla, described by all who knew her as strong, dependable, and generous, passed away after a brief battle with advanced pancreatic cancer on August 27, 2022.
Mary Ellen was born in Wantagh, New York on May 7, 1960, where she lived until her family relocated to Atlanta, Georgia. She graduated from St. Pius X Catholic High School and later received her Bachelor of Nursing degree from Georgia State University.
Mary Ellen and Lon Hesla were married in 1984. Their son, Kevin, arrived in January 1987, and daughter, Kirsten, was born in August 1988. Shortly afterwards, she and Lon moved to Littleton, Colorado, and after several years as a full-time nurse and mom of two small children, Mary Ellen completed her Master of Nursing degree at the University of Colorado.
It was clear from an early age Mary Ellen’s calling was taking care of people. She always found time to volunteer, support her friends and family, and raise her children. She was very engaged in the lives of her children, as well as their partners and close friends – her love, compassion, and empathy for people she cared about was boundless.
Mary Ellen was passionate about gardening, hiking, watercolor painting, and finding beauty in the world around her. She recently rediscovered her passion for flower arrangements and truly enjoyed helping create beautiful flower displays for weddings. Mary Ellen was an avid reader and an excellent cook. She often supported local artists and community gardens.
Throughout her life she learned to navigate challenges with grace, share her quiet wit, and embrace new experiences fully. She will be profoundly missed by her children, family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers.
A funeral mass will be held at All Souls Catholic Church in Centennial, Colorado on September 24, 2022, at 10:00am. A celebration of life reception will occur immediately after the mass at 11:00am at the church.
Mary Ellen supported many different charitable organizations. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in her honor to The Nature Conservancy, American Institute for Cancer Research, Wounded Warrior Project, Denver Rescue Mission, or an organization of your choosing.