Mary Elizabeth Trepany
August 15, 1923 - May 3, 2022
June 2, 2022
Betty Trepany, 98, longtime resident of Santa Monica, was born in Detroit to George and Elizabeth McClellan. After graduating from high school, she entered the Sisters Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary convent in Monroe, Mich. She realized she was being called in a different direction and left before taking her final vows. She continued teaching after leaving the convent and always looked fondly on the years she spent teaching elementary school. She was overjoyed when students she taught in fourth grade at St. Augustine in Culver City showed up to her 90th birthday party, and when a student she taught in the 1950s visited.
In 1959 she married Donald Trepany at St. Monica in Santa Monica, and they had three children. Donald and Betty always put their children first, with Betty's teaching influence allowing the home to become a sort of learning lab, with her children always encouraged to explore and try new things. They let their children build a treehouse and a clubhouse out of scrap wood in the backyard and dig holes to China. Family pets over the years included a dog, hens, roosters, hamsters, a chipmunk, goldfish, turtles, and even a Guinea pig. Evening walks in summers to the Montana Branch Library were a staple, Douglas Park was the family's extended backyard and attending Sunday morning Mass at St. Monica was mandatory and almost always followed by a hearty breakfast at Uncle John's coffee shop.
Betty stayed active throughout her life, competing in a bowling league into her late 80s, serving as a eucharistic minister at St. Monica and volunteering at St. John's Hospital into her 90s. Spending time with her grandchildren was probably her favorite activity, and she enjoyed a visit with her 1-year-old great-grandson, Alejandro, two weeks before she died.
Betty is survived by her children Mary-Janice (Narciso) Rodriguez, Donald (Kristy) and Timothy (Suzanne); grandchildren Vicente, David (Corinne) and Susana Rodriguez, Robert, Victoria and Charles Trepany; great-grandson Alejandro Rodriguez and several nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by husband Donald, grandsons Tomas and Baby Narciso, brothers George (Helen) and Robert (Florence) and sister Kathleen (Joe) Hoben.
Funeral Mass will be at 1:30 p.m. June 3 at St. Monica Catholic Church in Santa Monica, with a reception immediately following on parish grounds. She will be laid to rest at Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City. The family would like to thank the nurses, caregivers, and staff at Nazareth House assisted living and Faith and Hope Hospice. They gave Betty outstanding care.