- 68 years old
- Date of birth: Aug 21, 1944
- Place of birth:
White Plains, New York, United States
- Date of passing: Mar 31, 2013
- Place of passing:
Tujunga, California, United States
|Let the memory of Mary be with us forever|
"I feel really terrible that Mary Hsia died. In the early 1980s, I took all of her continuing education classes at Los Angeles City College because she was such an excellent teacher. Every semester she'd see me sitting in her classroom again. I had to move back to Massachusetts in 1985. But I wish she was still my teacher because it was such an excellent experience. And above all else, she'd be alive. After the last class I took with her, Mary gave me a ride to my apartment not far from LACC that night, and she only let me kiss her when we said goodbye. That was over three decades ago, but I'll never ever forget Mary Hsia. I was hoping to see that Mary Hsia was still teaching at LACC as I sit here at my computer crying."
"In Memory of My Dear Friend Mary Hsia / Mary Frances Hsia
I see the Mary I knew as happy and serene, in tune with her life as a whole, so that every moment came untroubled and full of interest for her. She enjoyed the wind, the sea, the earth and the sky without any worries; the elements were not forced upon her, but they shared their space with her. She loved to explore, go new places, and see things through her magical glasses, which expanded and enlightened the simplest of things; flowers became more colorful, sand became more sparkly, ripples in water became shinier, and sounds became more musical.
She was wonderful at giving – it made her happy to share her found treasures. And any gift she received was treasured, because she knew it came from the heart. (Over the years I gave her many, many tuba figurines, as she was my younger son’s tuba mentor).
We became friends 43 years ago and had ever so many wonderful adventures together over the ensuing years. Some of those adventures are represented in photos in this memorial.
There are many pictures in this memorial of Mary taken in the early 1970’s on “The Terrace” – a small street on a hill in Silverlake, Los Angeles, California called Ivan Hill Terrace. Our mutual friends in those golden days were Susan Roberts and Richard Cantu, who later married the lovely Alyce. We remained friends in the ensuing years.
Mary loved dogs and cats, as I did, and over the years, we both had many – Ed being her last sweet dog who now resides contentedly with Richard and Alyce Cantu back on “The Terrace.”
When Mary called me and told me that she was dying, without hesitation I told her I would be there in two days. My wonderful husband, Larry, (Mary was my maid of honor at our wedding), made reservations for a two week trip.
Once I got there, I realized Mary wanted and needed me to stay on. There was no way of knowing how long she would linger. I found that we soon had settled into a feeling of well-being with each other and I knew then I should remain indefinitely to comfort her.
Our best hours were evenings; we would watch movies and talk, while I knitted scarves. She was so incredibly knowledgeable on so many subjects; it was good to hear her talk about things that interested both of us – history, current events, music, and we would slip into conversations about “the good old days.”
I kept busy caring for Mary for two months. We finally agreed that I should talk Larry into coming for a brief visit. He agreed to come for five days and flew in on Wednesday evening. That coincided when Hospice agreed to have a full-time nurse with Mary and Mary’s sister Lynn, a nurse, decided to move in as well. That day there were four other nurses from Hospice in the house.
Knowing how crowds (more than one or two people) made Mary nervous at this stage of her"
"Here is an article about the beautiful place where we said good-bye to beautiful Mary Hsia. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/09/05/lake-shrine-los-angeles_n_5726636.html?1409937436"
"I miss Mary very much. I miss getting her "forwards"; I missing skyping with her; I miss laughing with her."
"A knowing smile, a quick quip, a warm hug, a self-depreciating shrug, an encompassing intelligence, a caring soul -- all these were Mary to everyone who was priviledged to come in contact with her. Her time on earth was far too short for such a large soul.
Sam A. Eisenstein, Professor of English at Los Angeles City College"
You have always been a great friend to me. I enjoyed our talks over sushi with you and my husband Jeff. I am going to miss you very much. I look forward to visiting with your dog Ed in honor of you. You are very much a part of my heart. My condolences to your family."
"Mary and I taught ESL together at LACC. She loved teaching, and her students loved her. She especially advocated for our lowest level students as she firmly believed that the mission of a community college is to serve all of the community. Her favorite book to teach was an adaptation of "Black Beauty" as she shared her love for animals with her students."
"Mary....we go way back when I first was hired at LACC as a Classified. You were Department Chair..I can remember you when I was a student too. That beautiful long hair and beautiful smile and laugh..You will be missed..God Bless my friend...don't forget Tuba Christmas..Always in my Heart.....to Mary's family...I am sorry for your loss...."
"To Mary family and friends,
I work with Mary for more than ten years in the Admissions and Records Office Mary was a beautiful person to work with, I will miss her smile. I am happy to say that I had the opporturnity to speak to Mary in March or April of this year. It was a pleasure to walk down memory lane with Mary about our experiences of working together"
"My wife Jane Lin had the enormous pleasure of teaching ESL with you at LACC, a job which she kept for over 23 years. It made it possible for my daughters and me to move to the US and live together. And over the past decade, I've enjoyed exchanging ideas with you via e-mail and watching pictures of animals you sent me."
"many happy memories of you Mary. From Buffalo and Wauwatosa.
Fun to play with, loved your giggle. And always heard about your GOOD grades.
There is only good about you.
"I got to know Mary for the first time 2 years ago when she donated her very large,well organized brass music library to Pasadena City College.Hundreds of my brass students have already benefited from this music. Her generosity and kindness has enriched and touched so many lives, inspiring young people to be better musicians and be better people. I am humbled and thankful to have known her."
"Rest in peace, Mary. You will be remembered in the hearts of those who were privileged to know you and had the opportunity to hear your music.
My condolences to her family and to my very dear friend Lynn. I know the grief and loss when a sister is taken. My thoughts are with all of you."
"I was happy to have known and worked with Mary at the HSU Brass Workshop. She gave us the pleasure of her company, and lots of Robert Wilkinson's arrangements!"
"Mary was a sweetheart of a cousin and a beautiful friend. I knew her my entire life; we had lots of good times together so I am blessed with many magnificent memories of the times we shared together. I miss her very much. She will always be a part of me. She will always be in my heart. Thank you Lynn. I will keep the tribute alive. xxx"
"Seeing Mary sit down, and then ever so gracefully strap that full-sized tuba on her back and stand up with strength and a smile characterized her personality for me. She'll not be forgotten even by those of us who knew her only briefly."
"Mary was a dear friend and neighbor. She was kind, fun, and generous. Many times she took in and cared for my dog, Sophie, when I had to be away. I have dedicated many of my compositions to many relatives and friends, but the only people to whom I have dedicated more than one work are my mother and Mary Hsia. I'll share more on the stories page, including the poem I wrote for her."
"Mary was one of my best and closest friends. We played in the tuba/euphonium ensemble at Pasadena City College starting in about 1990. She formed the tuba/euphonium quartet "TubaCzar" with Tat Chui, Francisco Aguilar, Robert Wilkinson and me (Virginia Moore) shortly thereafter. She was one of the most generous, warm and loving persons I have ever known. I miss her so much!"
"This web site has been created in rememberance of my sister, Mary, who I dearly loved and desperately miss. I hope that family and friends will join in, leaving photos and memories that they would like to share with one another. I plan to keep on adding photos and stories, making this a living tribute."
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