Visitation at Funeral Home
Obituary of Mary Julia Becker
Mary Lengyel Becker, educator extraordinaire and cherished mother/grandmother/sister, died Friday, November 30, 2018, at Akron Summa City Hospital. She was 90 years old.
Born in August 1928, she touched thousands of lives during her 33 years as a teacher at Firestone Park Elementary School in Akron. She also served as a guidance counselor at West Junior High.
Mrs. Becker received both bachelor ('62) and masters of science ('65) degrees in education from The University of Akron, which honored her in 2005 with their Distinguished Alumni Award for her achievements in the education field and significant contributions to the community.
Mrs. Becker did post graduate studies at The University of London, Cambridge University, Oxford University, The University of New Delhi and The University of Moscow. She was also a doctoral degree candidate at The University of Akron.
In addition to having an outstanding career in education in the Akron Public Schools, Mrs. Becker was a freelance writer with literary acclaim. Her essay, Reading Is a Treasure, earned her a nomination for a spot on the Reading Hall of Fame in New York. The essay was published in international reading magazines throughout the United States. It was also used by former President Clinton's American Reads program and for Reader Challenge. It also was the basis for former First Lady Barbara Bush's literary campaign, Governor Bob Taft's Ohio Reads, President Bush's Adult Education and the National Education Association's signature program, Read Across America which focused on motivating teens to read through events, partnerships and reading resources. It won The Literary Award in Finland, and The Washington Post used it for Worldwide Books.
She is survived by her daughter Samuella and grandson Adam Samuel Maltese of New York City, siblings Jack Lengyel (Sandy) of Annapolis, Goldie (Dan) Ross of Barberton and Betty (Ream) Barclay of Kill Devil Hills, NC. She was preceded in death by her husband, Samuel Becker, and her parents Nicholas and Mary Krieger Lengyel.
Prior to her educational career, she was a beauty queen, as Miss Akron 1952 (?) and a runner up to Miss Ohio in the Miss America pageant. She also assisted Paige Palmer, the "First Lady of Fitness," on her namesake show on WEWS-TV, Cleveland.
The family will receive friends Thursday, December 6, 2018 from 4 to 7 pm at the Anthony Funeral Home Kucko-Anthony-Kertesz Chapel, 1990 S. Main St., Akron OH 44301where a memorial service will be held at 7:00 pm.
Kucko-Anthony-Kertesz Funeral Chapel - 1990 South Main Street | Akron, Ohio 44301 | Phone: (330) 724-1281
McGowan-Reid and Santos Funeral Chapel - 247 Stow Avenue | Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio 44221 | Phone: (330) 928-1313
Anthony and Son Funeral Home - 4178 Massillon Road | Uniontown, Ohio 44685 | Phone: (330) 724-1281