Aug. 5, 1924 – Sept. 1, 2014
Aug. 5, 1924 — Sept. 1, 2014
Mary Alice DeVay (maiden name Bambach) passed away peacefully at her home, surrounded by her family, on Sept. 1, 2014, in Davis, just a few weeks after her 90th birthday.
She was the beloved wife of James E. DeVay for close to 68 years. She was the loving mother of six children: Susan Shinneman (Chuck), Liz Broderick (Kevin), Sally Andrews (John), Joseph DeVay (Jill), Paula Dolliver (Don) and Mike DeVay (Melissa). She has 14 grandchildren: Lauren Thornsberry, Reilly Sweetland, Mathew DeVay, Paul DeVay, Rachel Jacobson, Erin Henitz, Amelia Broderick, Brent and Chris Dolliver, Dione Umbach, James Andrews, Molly Kollross and David Andrews.
And she has 11 great-grandchildren: Quentin and Cleo Thornsberry, Kelsey and Charlie Sweetland, Ella and Julia Henitz, Justin Dolliver, Kaylee, Jordan, Penelope and Tenley Kollross. Mary also leaves behind her beloved black Labrador retriever, Ben.
She was predeceased by her parents, Ferdinand and Mary Francis (Collier) Bambach of St. Paul, Minn., and her brother, Raymond Bambach, of Pensacola, Fla., and numerous nieces and nephews.
Mary Alice was born in St. Paul to Mary Frances and Ferdinand on Aug. 5, 1924. Her mother died soon after giving birth. Her grandmother, Elizabeth Collier, helped raise her. When she turned 5, she attended boarding school at the Visitation Convent where she was well-educated and trained as a classical pianist. She went on to attend the University of Minnesota and majored in English and fine arts.
On Dec. 27, 1947, Mary Alice married the love of her life, Jim DeVay, who was studying to receive his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota. They moved to Davis in 1957, where he accepted a professorship in the department of plant pathology at UC Davis.
In addition to her duties as a full-time mother and wife, Mary Alice was an active volunteer at St. James Catholic Church and STEAC, the local food pantry. She also was a Master Gardener and worked at the UC Davis Arboretum.
Mary Alice was a gifted artist. She owned and operated a shop called The Woolery in Bodega, Calif., for many years where she sold beautiful imported Irish woolen goods, and displayed her own artwork as well as other local artists.
Mary was a beautiful woman, treasured by her family and friends for her witty personality and great sense of humor.
The family wishes to thank Sutter Hospice for the care and guidance they provided during Mary Alice’s last days.
The viewing will be held Friday, Sept. 5, 2014, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Wiscombe Funeral Home, 116 D St. in Davis. A rosary will be recited following the viewing, from 8:30 to 9 p.m.
The funeral service will begin at 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014, at St. James Catholic Church, 1275 B St. in Davis.