Dena Mary Blay-Stroba, 80, of Stevensville, MI, died Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020, surrounded by her loving family at home.
Dena was born in Detroit, MI, on June 16, 1939. The daughter of Clarence and Henrietta (Boekema) Blay, she was the first of 5 siblings. Dena was a passionate music lover and music major at Western Michigan University. In her younger years she was a music instructor and choir member at St. Joseph Catholic church. She was also a well studied theologist, exploring not only her Catholic faith as a member of the Carmelite Order, but also many faiths from around the world. This led her to be a pioneering and integral member of the Interfaith Institute and Mothers Trust Mothers Place located in Fennville, MI.
Dena married George Stroba Jr. on Oct. 10, 1959 in St. Joseph. She was a dedicated mother and grandmother, always putting her family first. She devoted her time, prayers and patience to the people she loved and cared for. Dena was the foundation of which her family was raised. Mom was always ready with an open mind, kind words, great advice, and a warm hug.
Dena is survived by her husband of 60 years, George; daughters, Mary (Scott) Hauch and Susan (Tim) Mance; sons, David (Kerri LaRoux) Stroba, Jonathan Stroba and George Stroba III; sister, Mary (Chris) Cassel; brother, Stephen Blay; seven grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
A memorial mass celebrating Dena’s life will be held at St. Bernard Catholic Church, 555 East Delaware Ave, Benton Harbor, MI on Friday, March 6 at 11 am. Luncheon to follow at the church immediately after. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Berrien County Cancer Service, St. Joseph, MI.
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