By MB Rotary Club President John Solu and Judy Salamacha
After a lifetime of cheerleading for others our good friend Mary Leizear could use some of our time, help, and prayers.
Mary had a stroke Friday night, July 22. It woke her up. She said she knew it was different and called 911. Paramedics stabilized her as they transported her to St. John’s Regional Hospital in Oxnard. She received innovative surgery and treatment, but it will take time to retrain her body to catch back up with her quick wit and zest for independent living. Please go to Morro Bay Rotary Club’s Web Page: morrobayrotary.org and donate by clicking the “Help Mary” button on the left side under her picture.
Mary touched many friends in diverse circles and professions throughout SLO County. She considered her chance to live on the Central Coast a gift and her second chance. She was an over-achiever working at Morro Bay’s Sun Bulletin as well as her executive assistant position to the CEO at the Morro Bay Power Plant before it’s closure — without a pension.
When invited to join the Rotary Club of Morro Bay, her advocacy became her passion. For years she worked as club secretary, the glue behind its operations. In 2022 President Tim Olivas recognized her as the Rotarian of the Year particularly for her advocacy coordinating the delivery of fresh fish to the Food Bank and ECHO of Paso Robles, serving on the “Help Us Help Others” quarterly BBQ crew and supporting the Adopt-A-Teacher project at Del Mar Elementary School.
A longtime supporter of the Estuary Program, she fostered the Mutt Mitt program now providing doggie waste bags at all Estero Bay beaches and parks. She has an incredible memory for history and regularly participated in activities supporting area museums, SLO Lifelong Learners, Museum Mind Walks, and the SLO County Historical Society.
Mary actively prepared for a retirement she knew she would need to fund herself. Early on, she registered for an apartment at Judson Terrace in SLO where she befriended many new and treasured friends. But her “health club” and “girls’ social club” became Sinsheimer Pool. She believed the waters were healing. No matter how much pain she was in with knee, shoulder, heart — she has a pacemaker — breathing problems, Mary has gone to Sinsheimer Pool for water aerobics and warm water exercise, usually at least four times a week regardless of the season. For years she has been a loyal daily listener of “The Dave Congalton Show” on KVEC-Radio and an avid follower of area news, professional golf and worldwide cycling.
She has always loved dogs, travel and eating out whenever she could afford it, historic home tours, crab feeds especially SLO and Morro Bay Rotary’s or during the season at Tognazzini’s Dockside. She loves her coffee! Saturdays at Blackhorse Coffee or at home enjoying Top Dog Coffee Bar’s Rescue-Me-Coffee — naturally, her contribution to support rescue dogs. She was a sought-after dog sitter and walker in Morro Bay. Her fees supported her travel fund. Both had to stop when her health made it too difficult to take care of the pups she loved so much.
Now Mary could use a little help from her friends. Whether a card, visit or financial investment to get back her independence, let her know she’s loved and missed. In fact, I suggest we challenge her. If she doesn’t use up all the funds donated getting back her independence, then she is authorized to spend the balance on a cruise to somewhere she hasn’t been yet. I’m up for a cruise with Mary whenever that might be in her future. How about you? We could all use her endearing ‘snarky-get-off-our duffs’ attitude to keep us honorable and to inspire us all to do good things.
Bring her cards of good cheer? Mary Leizear C/o Maywood Acres Healthcare, 2641 S. C St., Oxnard, CA 93033.
To donate to support her journey to independence, go to Morro Bay Rotary Club’s Web Page: morrobayrotary.org and donate by clicking the “Help Mary” button on the left side under her picture.