Mary Louise Tavernaro

September 18, 1942February 14, 2021

On February 14, 2021, Mary Louise Tavernaro passed away in her sleep at St. Joseph’s Place in Overland Park, KS. Mary left us on a day meant for celebrating those you love, and Mary was the symbol of Love for our family. The steady heartbeat at the center of us all.

Mary was born on September 18, 1942, to Ruth and Leonard Rast. She and her sister, Ruthie, grew up in a close, loving family. Mary was raised in the Kansas City area where she attended Lillis High School. It was while attending a high school dance that she met a young man, full of life and a bit of himself, and the quiet young beauty fell in love. I imagine she and her sister, Ruth, spent many nights together talking about her new beau as they listened to Mary’s extensive collection of Elvis records.

She finally married that first love, Robert Tavernaro, in 1965, and they were together from that point on until parted by his death in November of 2019. Mary and Bob raised two children, Lynn Tavernaro Salisbury and Robert Tavernaro, in the Catholic School Community of Kansas City. Lynn and Bobby were Mary’s purpose in life. She was a devoted mother and very proud of these two wonderful children she was raising. She instilled her kindness, her warm heart, and her caring spirit into them both. Anyone who knows them would tell you that you couldn’t find a kinder heart than Lynn’s or a more loyal spirit than Bobby’s. They both exemplified what Mary and Bob stood for in life.

Mary was not only a wife, mother, and grandmother, but also a cherished friend and devoted Aunt and Sister-in Law. She spent her life surrounded by family and friends. ‘Aunt’ Mary was grateful to have so many nieces and nephews to watch grow up with her own children. Her sister-in-law, Barbara, and Brother-in-law, Ron, were always there to support her young family. They formed a tight bond from early on that sustained them through life. Family gatherings were always eventful, loud, and chaotic, but filled with love, laughter, and food! Mangia Taci!

When we speak of Mary’s life we cannot forget her incredible circle of friends. This bond was forged early on in her marriage and held strong for decades. A circle of women who have supported each other through all of life’s ups and downs. They have raised their children together, laughed together, cried together, celebrated together, and formed a truly special extended family. Her dear friends feel this loss as deeply as any of us. They now have a missing piece of their puzzle; an empty seat at the table.

Mary was preceded in death by her parents, Ruth and Leonard, her husband, Bob, her sister, Ruth, and her sweet daughter, Lynn. I know she was happy to be reunited with them all. She missed them each day and knew they were waiting to guide her home.

She leaves behind her son, Bobby, and his wife, Jennifer, Her Son-in law, Randy, and the four pieces of her heart: Molly and Maggie Salisbury (Doyle), and Olivia and Sullivan Tavernaro.

Mary loved us all, but it was the love of her granddaughters that would define her life. A grandmother’s love is said to have no boundaries and for Mary there was no other way to love these four remarkable young women. They were what kept her tethered to this world. To watch her beautiful Maggie walk down the aisle, to hear the joy in Molly’s lovely laughter, to see sparkle in Olivia’s stunning eyes as she spoke, and to be amazed by Sully’s latest creative endeavor! Her girls; Forever her girls.

Please keep Mary in your Prayers but know she is at Peace. She was ready to go Home.

Live Feed for Mary’s Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:30 A.M. on Friday, February 19th. Private graveside burial will be held at Calvary Cemetery in Kansas City, MO.


  • Rosary Service

    Friday, February 19, 2021

  • Mass of Christian Burial

    Friday, February 19, 2021



Mary Louise Tavernaro

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