Mary Louise (Ricica) Vallie died on April 10, 2019, in Johnson City, Tennessee after a series of illnesses.
Lou was born on March 15, 1931, in Dundee, Michigan, the first child of Charles and Mary Ricica. She lived in Britton, Tecumseh, Ypsilanti, and Rose City, Michigan, as well as Anna Maria, Florida, and, most recently, Erwin and Johnson City, Tennessee.
Lou shared a full life with her husband, James J. Vallie, whom she married on September 30, 1950, in Britton, Michigan. The couple moved soon after to Chicago, where Jim was stationed. They raised four children and welcomed a fifth, an exchange student from China, into the family. Together they were active in their church and community activities. Lou and Jim built houses together in Tecumseh and Ypsilanti, Michigan, and Anna Maria, Florida. They shared a love of travel, taking their children on two epic trips in a pop-up camper to the western United States, up and down the east coast, to Alaska, and many times to Florida. Her house in Florida, filled with memories, continues to be a favorite vacation spot for the family. Lou and Jim also traveled to China and to Lou’s family home in the Czech Republic. Jim died in April of 1993.
Lou received her bachelor’s degree in special education from Michigan Normal College and her master’s from Eastern Michigan University. “Mrs. Vallie” was a dedicated teacher in the Chicago schools, then in Tecumseh Public Schools and Van Buren Public Schools in Belleville, Michigan.
Her parents and sons-in-law, Thomas L. Flagg and James Day, both of whom were Lou’s favorite, preceded her in death.
Family was central to Lou’s life. She is survived by her children: Wai Ming (Becky) Lui, Sandra (Thomas Flagg) Vallie, Vickie (James) Day, Michael (Sandra) Vallie, Kevin (Deborah) Vallie and her sister Ann Squires.
Lou delighted in her grandchildren and followed their lives with close interest: Isaac (Ivette Rojas) Vallie-Flagg, Jason (Karen Rowe) Day, Michael (Haley) Rebant, Jennie Vallie, Nicholas (Falon) Vallie, Aaron (Gwen) Day, Kevin Vallie, Leah (Luke) Elders, Nicole (Michael) Grammar, Amy Vallie, Kaitlyn Vallie, Micayla Vallie and Benjamin Vallie.
Especially precious to her were great-grandchildren Kristen (Kal Stewart) Vallie, Makayla Kantor, Kaiden Compau, Kameron Compau, Kaileigh Compau, Brayhdon Vallie, Maddy Bidgood, Wyatt Vallie, Madison Rebant, Jaxson Vallie, Neyla Vallie, Lorelei Grammar, and Addison Elders; and great-great-grandchild Kahlila Stewart.
The family wishes to thank the kind and caring staff at Cornerstone Village in Johnson City, Tennessee, where she spent her last months.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to a worthwhile cause of your choice. Services will be held on Saturday, April 13, at Handler Funeral Home, 313 W. Pottawatamie Street, Tecumseh, Michigan. Visitation begins at 10 am; services follow at 11.
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