Mary Lee Strack, 88, of North Little Rock died unexpectedly, but peacefully and surrounded by family Wednesday, December 30. Hers was a life well lived.
Mary Lee was born July 4, 1932 to Leo and Helen Jablonski, their only child. In her childhood and young adult years, she became a gifted dancer, even making trips from Arkansas to New York City to perform. After graduating from Mount St. Mary Academy in Little Rock, she went on to teach dance for many years at Dorothy Donaldson Dance Studio and later at Joel Ruminer’s House of Dance. In 1954, after meeting and marrying Ira, her husband of almost 67 years, she became a mother and they raised five children together. Mary Lee joined Ira as co-owner of Custom Printing Company in 1966, and served in many capacities, including bookkeeper and Treasurer, until her retirement fifty years later. She was a life-long resident of North Little Rock, and was a founding member and active member of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church.
Second only to her love for Ira, family was Mary Lee’s love and passion. She was happiest when surrounded by family members, and the more, the merrier. Being an only child, she quickly and readily adopted her cousins and their spouses, and Ira’s seven brothers and sisters and their spouses as her own family. Mary Lee had an affinity for celebrating birthdays. Being born on Independence Day, she would joke that the “whole country” celebrated her birthday. And because her birthday was so special, she insisted that everyone’s should be. Celebrating birthdays was almost a mandatory family event, much like the holidays! Mary Lee was also an avid sports fan, especially when it came to her children and grandchildren. She never missed an opportunity to watch them participate in their games or dance recitals, oftentimes attending multiple events with Ira on the same day.
Mary Lee was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her husband Ira; five children: Kathy Strack, Joe Strack (Donna), Linda Bridges (Steve), Paul Strack (Lisa), and Sharon Gunter (Marc); twelve grandchildren: Billy Strack (Allie), Laura Aday (Steve), Patrick Strack (Taylor), Tony Bridges (Kim), Ryan Bridges (Hallie), Chris Bridges (Cara), Michael Strack (Jessie), Matthew Strack, Amanda Strack, Anna Strack, Lindsey Gunter, and Adam Gunter; and five great grandchildren: Reilly, Brooklyn, Rowan, Joseph, and Sloane.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Mount St. Mary Academy in Little Rock or Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in North Little Rock.
Visitation will be held Monday, 6:00-7:00 pm., January 4 at Smith-North Little Rock Funeral Home followed by Rosary at 7:00 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be said Tuesday, 10:00 a.m. January 5 at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in North Little Rock. Committal and burial will be Friday, 10:00 a.m., January 8, at Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery. COVID-19 Mandates: Mask at all times, social distancing encouraged. Visit www.smithfamilycares.com for online guest register.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Mary Lee Strack, please visit our floral store.
Immaculate Conception Catholic Church
7000 JFK Blvd, North Little Rock AR 72116
Mount Saint Mary Academy
3224 Kavanaugh Blvd., Little Rock AR 72205