FORT MYERS, FL- Mary Jo Roe (nee LoParo), age 80, died peacefully at her home surrounded by her family on Tuesday, May 15, 2023. A private Mass of Christian Burial was held on May 23, 2023 at St. John XXIII Catholic Church in Fort Myers. Internment at St. Joseph’s Cemetery and Mausoleum, Cincinnati, Ohio. Beloved wife of Clifford A. Roe, Jr. for 58 years and mother of Mary Roe (Albert) Chailosky, Clifford A. III, Michael S., Daniel J. (Emily) Roe, Beth Roe (Steve) Taylor and Cathleen Roe Eagan whose death preceded hers by 18 years. She is survived by brothers Carmen (Margie) and Robert (Nancy) LoParo and sister Jude (Art) Johansen. She was the proud grandmother of sixteen grandchildren-Marie and Elizabeth Chailosky, Clifford IV and Ben Roe, Maggie, Josie and Lily Roe, Bella, Ryan and Maria Eagan, Madeline and Peter Roe, and Christian, Sean, Gabriel and Aidan Neidhard.
In addition to serving as a loving wife and the heart of a large family, Mary Jo considered herself a nurse to all those she met and knew throughout her life. She came to Cincinnati in 1960 and entered Good Samaritan School of Nursing, graduating in 1963. She was told she was too small to serve as a nurse at her first interview, which was a mistake (her heritage was Sicilian and Irish)! After graduation as an RN, her first posting at Good Sam was as a psych nurse on the locked psychiatric ward. Her first “day” on the job was at the start of the midnight shift. She then worked as a med-surg nurse in South Bend while her husband attended law school. When she returned to Cincinnati with her first two children, she went back to being a psych nurse at Good Sam before taking a break to have four more children.
Mary Jo continued her love of nursing by not only caring for her growing family but through her role as a eucharistic minister at her various Catholic parishes and in caring for the people she met in that role who needed more than just one visit per week. During those years she cared for the needs of several elderly folks who had nobody else to care for them. When her youngest child started pre-school, Mary Jo followed her and became the school nurse.
In her life of service, Mary Jo was truly the consummate wife, mother, grandmother and nurse. When her daughter Cathleen was suffering with terminal melanoma in her town in New Jersey, Mary Jo spent the better part of two years caring for her including living in the hospital with her for ten weeks prior to her death. Mary Jo often observed that God called her to be a nurse so she could take care of Cathleen for those two years.
Suffering a stroke in 2017 slowed her down a little, though Mary Jo fought its effects every day. Eventually vascular dementia took her home to her loved ones who predeceased her.
When Cathleen died in 2005 “Melanoma Know More” became Mary Jo’s favorite charity. Desired memorial contributions may be to made to this charity by visiting the website at melanomaknowmore.com or feel free to contribute to the charity of your choice.