Mary Kotzas AGE: 86 • Toms River Mary Kotzas passed away on at home on Saturday, February 11, 2017 surrounded by her loving family. She was born in New York City on June 9, 1930. She moved to Toms River in 1946, married Byron Kotzas in 1949 and proceeded to raise four children. Shortly thereafter, she began a life of selfless giving through hard work, volunteering and philanthropy throughout our community. Mary was predeceased by her husband of 63 years, Byron, the founder of Crossroads Realty, in 2012. She is survived by her children: Steve (Chetra), George, Mark, Linda and her nephew Theo Basis (Jane), who she loves like a son, two grandchildren: Gregory and Warren Kotzas, grand nephews Stavros and Nicholas Basis, three great grandchildren: Wyatt, Faye and Ada, her beloved friend and niece, Anita Mengason in addition to many friends and colleagues. Mary began her decades of volunteering at age 25. At that time her primary fund raising efforts were devoted to Community Medical Center, where she helped with fashion shows, raffles, hospital balls and the gift shop. She was a member of the hospital's Board of Trustees for 13 years and was active with the hospital's Auxiliary Laurel Twig since 1962. On her birthday, June 9, in 1975 she opened Community's Second Time Around Consignment Shop where she volunteered for 27 years. This store has raised over $3 million dollars. She was formally recognized for her contributions to the hospital in 1991 when the courtyard garden was dedicated to her. She also served as President of the Suburban Club, a Board member of Harbor House for 20 years, a founding member of the United Way of Ocean County's Board, President of Open Arms, a longtime financial supporter of St. Barbara's Greek Orthodox Church and was the founder of the Harbor House Resale Shop in 2002. Her latest project was the Charity Resale Shop in Toms River on Route 37W. This non-profit shop makes a donation to a different local charity each month. She credited the success of both stores to the corps of dedicated volunteers who staff the shops and worked tirelessly beside her. Volunteering for the betterment of her community was her lifetime work and she was recognized by several organizations for her contributions. Besides the atrium garden dedicated to her by Community Medical, she has been honored by the National Conference of Christians and Jews, Harbor House, Ocean County Hunger Relief, the Toms River Chamber of Commerce as their Citizen of the Year, the Soroptimist Club as a Woman of Distinction, Caregivers, the Garden State Coalition for Runaway & Homeless Youth, the Asbury Park Press as one of their Hometown Heroes and received the 2010 Garden State Seeds of Hope Award The family will receive friends Monday, February 20, 2017 1-4pm & 7-9pm with a service to be offered at 7:30pm at the Timothy E. Ryan Home for Funerals, 145 St. Catherine Blvd., Toms River. A funeral service will be offered Tuesday, February 21, 2017 10:00am at St. Barbara's Greek Orthodox Church, Toms River. Burial to follow at Ocean County Memorial Park, Toms River. In lieu of flowers, a donation for the Charity Resale Shop at 747 Rt. 37W, Toms River, NJ 08755 would be most appreciated. All proceeds from the shop remain in Ocean County. For more information, to send condolences or for directions, please visit www.ryanfuneralhome.com .
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