Mary Irene Beaver was born in David, Iowa on November 3, 1927 to Roy and Laura Beaver. She passed away surrounded by family on January 20, 2017. Mary was raised on numerous farms in north central Iowa and southern Minnesota. Following graduation from Charles City High School, she moved to Des Moines to attend Thompson School of Beauty. While attending school, she was a part-time nanny in exchange for room and board. Her close classmate, Presha Pryor, introduced her to her brother Sonny (Clay Alan Pryor) and they were married on January 21, 1948. They were blessed with five children. Mary was a stay-at-home mom and often babysat for neighborhood children. In 1966 she began working mother’s hours at Ramsey Memorial Home. She began working in 1970 as a bookkeeper for the food service department at Drake University. Mary held this position until she retired 1999 at age 72. Over the years, her hobbies included: sewing, crocheting, puzzles, jewelry making, constructing and furnishing miniature doll houses, and gardening. Her favorites were roses, hostas, and perennials. She grew test roses for Jackson & Perkins.
Family left to remember her include: sisters Alice Merical and Ruth Panhoff; sisters-in-law Marilyn Pryor and Peggy Beaver; brothers-in-law Ray Pryor and Guy Pryor; children Betty Jean Shank Miller, Sandy Robinson (Jeff), Joy Shank (Dan), Mary Lynn Wilson (John), Clay Alan Pryor, Jr. (Vicky); grandchildren Michael and Erik Shank, Jaime Leo (Mike), Joy Comerford (Jim), Nicole Avery (Luke), Danielle Pryor (Timmy Jaynes); step grandchildren Coby Shank (Brenda), Tatum Shank (Jennifer); great grandchildren Madelyn and Samuel Leo, Levi, Lucy, and Daphne Avery, Navy Jaynes and half brother Isaiah; step great grandchildren Caylee Shank, Brianna Woods, Joshua Shank, and Skylar Shank.
Mary was preceded in death by her husband, parents, brothers Owen, Bill, Lester, Ralph (Norma), sisters Joy Delaney (Bill), Helen Leidal (Glen), Esther Parmenter, brothers-in-law Floyd Russell (Irene), Wayne Pryor (Donna), sisters-in-law Clara Bruce (Billy), Vivian Jones (Tom), Presha Olmsted (Bob), Esther Pryor, Linda Pryor; son-in-law Dave Miller.