Mary Elizabeth Rockwell, 93, peacefully slipped the bonds of this earth on February 5, 2021 into the embrace of her Tom, surrounded by her children in the home she loved. Born February 23, 1927 in Cincinnati, Ohio to Frank W. Bland and Hildegarde Ronnebaum, Elizabeth grew up in Milbrae, California. She earned her Associates degree from San Mateo Junior College in 1947, and her exceptional artistic talents could easily have led her to professional heights. Instead, she bound herself to the love of her life, moved to Columbus, Ohio and poured her gifts into her family, church and community.
She taught at St. Michael’s Catholic School while supporting her husband’s PhD program and proudly embraced her role as an OSU faculty wife. A member of the OSU University Women’s Club for more than 50 years, she served on the board and was active in many groups, especially Buckeye Bargains and Toymakers where she made life-long friends. She volunteered on the OSU Medical Service Board where her artwork remains on display in the Spirit of Women Park. As members of St. Thomas More Newman Center, she and Tom brought comfort and care to others as Hospital Eucharistic Ministers and through the Food for the Homeless Ministries. But Elizabeth found the most gratification in creating a home filled with faith, love and laughter for her ever-expanding family.
Elizabeth is preceded in death by her loving husband, Thomas Hugh Rockwell, her daughter, Ann Marie (June 21, 1959), her parents, brothers John Bland and Frank Bland and daughter-in-law, Rulah Rockwell. She is survived by her six children, Matthew, Thomas Jr. (Jacqueline), Patricia (Charles), Paul (Kendra), Christopher (Sharon), and Daniel (Mary), 13 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren.
Elizabeth’s extraordinary life will be celebrated at a Funeral Mass on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 at 10:00 am at the St. Thomas More Newman Center. Mass can be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxL7DcvXVKA In lieu of flowers, please consider a gift to the Dr. Thomas H. Rockwell Endowment fund at The Ohio State University, or to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Mary Elizabeth Rockwell, please visit our floral store.