NORTH JACKSON, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Elizabeth Maria (Riener) Fekete, born on August 21, 1927 in Semriach, Austria to Josef and Stefanie Riener, passed away peacefully after a long illness on Thursday, February 9, 2023, at age 95.  

She was one of four children. She was brought up in the Austrian countryside (province of Styria) and began her lifelong career in education as a kindergarten teacher in the city of Graz.

She met the love of her life and husband of 48 years, Miklos “Nick” Fekete, while they were both teachers. They were married in 1952 and decided to build a new life in America, first arriving in New York then moving to the Midwest and eventually settling down in Youngstown, where Miklos found work at US Steel for many years before eventually becoming a German language teacher at Austintown Fitch High School. Youngstown became their lifelong home where they raised a family of four sons. Elizabeth loved her family beyond measure and devoted all of her time and efforts to bringing up her children. Once the kids were grown, she went back to school to obtain her education degree, becoming a German language teacher at Youngstown State University for almost 20 years. She loved her profession and dedicated all of her time to teaching and helping out her students.      

After her retirement, she traveled often with her husband back to Austria and Hungary, where they renewed many old friendships and family ties. Elizabeth also loved spending time at home, cultivating her garden, reading many diverse books, taking language courses in French and Italian and listening to classical music, especially Italian opera. She was an accomplished cook and an avid baker–her Austrian cuisine was a constant delight to the many guests who were invited to her home over the years. She developed many close and loyal friendships, both here and in Austria, all of who remained as her lifelong friends and who she was very fond of. She strived to make hospitality and good cheer (“Gemütlichkeit”) a way of life. She loved nature and took daily walks in Mill Creek Park and by the Hungarian Shrine where she attended church. Most of all she loved just spending time with her family and friends. She remained faithful to the church and devoted to Christian values all her life–especially charity to others, faith and honesty. She was the inspiration for all of her family. 

She leaves behind her four sons, Christopher (Erin), Paul (Sara), Matthew (Joni) and Fritz (Marge); ten grandchildren, Guinevere, Ian, Vivian, Charlotte, Christine, Stephanie, Lauren, Dean, Elly and Karl, who were the light in her life and six great grandchildren, Oliver, Tallulah, Archer, Wyatt, Andrew and Alan, who she would have dearly loved had she lived to meet them all. 

She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents and her three brothers, Alois, Joseph and Robert Riener.  

We will miss her enduring love but take comfort in knowing that she led a long and blessed life, full of hope, joy and adventure and that she will be welcomed back into the open arms of the loved ones who preceded her, together at the side of the Lord. 

The family extends their heartfelt thanks to Dr. Charles Wilkins, the Antonine Sisters, together with the many dedicated care workers from Antonine Village Memory Unit and Patriot Hospice Care, for their tireless and compassionate care for her.

Calling hours for family and friends will be on Wednesday, February 22 from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. and on Thursday, February 23 from 10:30 – 11:15 a.m., at Davis-Becker Funeral Home, 8536 Market Street, Boardman.

A funeral service will be held at the funeral home chapel on Thursday, February 23 at 11:30 a.m. A procession will follow for committal rites at Calvary Cemetery, 248 S. Belle Vista Avenue, Youngstown and a luncheon for family and friends will be held afterward at the Becker Family Center.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that any donations be made in memory of her name to Antonine Village, 2675 N. Lipkey Road, North Jackson, OH 44451.

Please visit to share memories and condolences.

A television tribute will air Thursday, February 16 at the following approximate times: 5:17 a.m. on WKBN, 8:39 a.m. on FOX, 5:21 p.m. on WYTV and 6:35 p.m. on MyYTV. Video will be posted here the day of airing.