SHARPSVILLE, Pennsylvania (MyValleyTributes) – Mary Ellen Bennett of Sharpsville passed away at 3:47 p.m. Saturday, March 7, 2020, in Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, after a brief illness. She was 87.
Mrs. Bennett was born January 2, 1933, in Sharpsville, a daughter of the late Robert Milton and Lenora (Alderman) Templeton.
A lifelong area resident, she was a 1951 graduate of Hickory High School where she enjoyed being a cheerleader.
Her husband of 47 years, former State Representative Reid L. Bennett, whom she married September 13, 1952, passed away January 26, 2000.
Years earlier, Mary Ellen was a sportswear purchasing agent at the former Sharon Store for ten years.
A homemaker most of her life, Mary Ellen was a member of the Sharon Baptist Church and later, a member of the First Baptist Church in Sharpsville.
She served as a chairwoman for the Mercer County United Way and was a member of the Shenango Valley Junior Women’s Follies. She was also chairwoman of the concession stand at Sharpsville Little League and a member of the concession stand team at South Pymatuning ballfields.
Mary Ellen loved the water and was a champion water skier. She was a charter member of the Conneaut Lake Ski Club and loved teaching family and friends how to water ski. She was also a life guard and a swimming instructor at St. John’s swimming pool in Sharon.
Mary Ellen will be remembered by many as a good friend and a staunch supporter of her family.
She is survived by a daughter, Cindy R. Cochran and her husband, Jeffrey L., of New Castle; a son, Reid R. Bennett and his wife, Teresa, of Asheville, North Carolina; four grandchildren, whom she adored, J. Bennett Cochran and his wife, Meredith, Jake Cochran, Savannah Bennett and Jenna Cochran; three great-grandchildren, Amora Carson, Evelyn Jane Cochran and Gabriel Bennett Cochran; a sister, Eleanor Smith of Brookfield and many nieces and nephews, whom she would like to thank for their many years of kindness.
Besides her parents and husband, Mary Ellen was preceded in death by four brothers, Rye, Charles, Perry and Paul Templeton and six sisters, Ruth Hughes, Phyllis Evans, Gladys Santelli, Esther Jones Boyle, Patricia Varkonda and Joan Polkovitch.
The family suggests memorial contributions be directed to Gladiator Sports Academy, P.O. Box 15824, Asheville, NC 15824 (www.gladiatorsportsaccademy.org)
Calling hours will be from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. Friday, March 13, 2020, in J. Bradley McGonigle Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 1090 E. State Street, Sharon.
A celebration of Mary Ellen’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, March 14, 2020, in the funeral home.
A television tribute will air Thursday, March 12, at the following approximate times: 7:10 a.m. on FOX, 12:22 p.m. on WKBN, 5:08 p.m. on MyYTV and 7:27 p.m. on WYTV.