Maryellen Ward, 71, of Ponchatoula, Louisiana, died at home on September 29, 2023. She was born on March 5, 1952, in Evanston, Illinois to Mary Francis Flynn and Frank John Ward and was married to Roger Brown, all of whom predeceased her. She lived in California, Colorado, Illinois, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming before settling into her true home in St. Tammany Parish, where she arrived in 1978 and met her dear sailing friends, known as “The Boat People,” part of her chosen family. She worked in various kitchens around St Tammany Parish, including Mande’s, Winner’s Circle, Dakota, and Riverside, retiring from her last job offshore. Everyone who knew her knew how much she loved her cozy camp on the Tangipahoa River, her cat companion of 20-plus years, Beezer, who predeceased her, and making the best dishes for every party. She was “Aunt Maryellen” to many, including Stopher and David Harrison, Katie and Christine Valentine, Slade and Aubrey Maurer, Eva Conner and Tyler Bewig. Maryellen was especially pleased with and is fondly remembered for her reign as Queen of the Mystic Krewe of Jolie Rouge and in the Mandeville lakefront parade she celebrated for years. Although her life was not without adversity and her health failed in recent years, she remained cheerful and optimistic.
Maryellen is survived by brothers William Ward, Lawrence Ward and James Love, her longtime companion Rick Jones, and her beloved new kitty Punkin.
A Celebration of Life will be held at a future date. Bagnell & Son Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Northshore Humane Society in her name.