Mary Jane (Pechnyo) NavtaJuly 25, 1923 ~ January 13, 2017 (age 93)
Mary Jane Navta (nee Pechnyo), age 93, of Munster, Indiana, was called home to the Lord on Friday, January 13, 2017. She passed away at the Hospice of the Calumet Area William J. Riley Memorial Residence. She was a loving wife, mother and grandmother. Mary Jane is survived by her daughter Laura Bergmann (Rev. Dr. Kevin Bergmann) of Munster, Indiana, daughter Jennifer Navta of Los Angeles, California; granddaughter Alison Bergmann of Bettendorf, Iowa; sister-in-law Verne Pechnyo; nieces and nephews Mary Pertile (Don), Tom Bogan (Jean), Judy Riad (Nabil), Tim Bogan, Nancy Bogan, Bernadine Amouretti (Yves), Daniel Pramuk (Terry), Vincent Vuletich, Jason Vuletich; and cousins George Sallay (Pat), Irene Jones, David Sallay (Kris), and Marge Sippos. She was preceded in death by her husband of 44 years, Emil P. Navta, her parents John and Mary Pechnyo, her brother John Pechnyo, Jr, her sister Esther Vuletich, and her brother Daniel Pechnyo, brothers-in-law Joseph Navta, Jr, John Yurchak, and John Bogan; and sisters in law Bertha Navta, Anne Yurchak, Olga Navta and Marie Bogan, and nieces Darlene Conway and Mary Beth Bogan.
Mary Jane was a longtime resident of Whiting (71 years), and graduated from Whiting High School in 1940 at age 16. After attending business school in Chicago, she worked as a secretary for Dr. F. M. Rogers, the Chief Chemist at Standard Oil Company in Whiting. One of her duties there included typing up top secret paperwork for the Manhattan Project. She later worked for the Central States Petroleum Union and Globe Roofing in Whiting and for Pullman Transport Leasing Company in Chicago, Illinois. Mary Jane was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul Ev. Lutheran Church of Whiting by the Rev. Dr. John S. Bradac. She served in the church as a member of the Deborah Guild, Prayer Group, Counters, Greeters and Lutheran Womens’ Missionary League, and attended the Midweek Bible Class. She also was a member of the Valpo Guild, which supports Valparaiso University. At Mount Greenwood Lutheran Church in Chicago, Illinois, she attended the Sunday Morning Bible Class, and at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Schaumburg, Illinois, she was a member of the Young at Heart Senior Group. In her younger days, Mary Jane enjoyed horseback riding and dancing at Madura’s Danceland. She attended classes at the Antoinette Pope Cooking School in Chicago, and was an excellent cook and baker. Mary Jane enjoyed canning homegrown fruits and vegetables, and made wonderful relishes, jams, jellies, cakes, pies and cheesecake. She excelled at making Slovak foods such as halupki, halushki, roshky, kolachki, nut roll, poppy seed roll and poppy seed cake. After she married in 1950, Mary Jane traveled to the Bahamas, Canada, England, France, Germany, Iceland, Mexico, Morocco, Spain, and Switzerland. She also enjoyed visiting Alaska and Hawaii and many places in the mainland United States. In her later days, she loved to read, reading as many as 42 books in one year. Mary Jane also enjoyed watching classic old movies and participating in family activities. She will be greatly missed.
Friends may visit with the family on Thursday, January 19, 2017, at Baran Funeral Home, 1235 119th St. in Whiting from 4 to 8 PM. A Memorial Service will take place at 7 PM. On Friday, January 20, 2017, a Memorial Service will take place at Mount Greenwood Lutheran Church, 10901 South Trumbull Ave., Chicago, IL at 9:30 AM. Visitation will preceed the Memorial Service starting at 9 AM. The Funeral Service will be held on Friday, January 20, 2017, at 1 PM at St. Peter Lutheran Church, 202 E. Schaumburg Rd., Schaumburg, IL, the Rev. Dr. Kevin Bergmann officiating. There will be a short visitation from noon to 1 PM at St. Peter immediately preceding the Funeral Service. For further information please contact Baran Funeral Home, www.baranfh.com (219) 659-4400. There will be a private interment at Concordia Cemetery in Hammond Indiana. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Lutheran Womens’ Missionary League or the Hospice of the Calumet Area.