Obituary of Mary Louise Shafer

November 25, 2023

Mary Lou Shafer, born Mary Louise Terenzio, passed away on November 25, 2023, in New York City. She was born on December 5, 1945, in New Haven, Connecticut. She graduated from the Dwight School for Girls in Englewood New Jersey. She earned a BA in political science from Manhattanville College in Purchase New York and an MA in American studies from George Washington University in Washington, DC.

Mary Lou is survived by her loving husband of 55 years, Jeffrey Shafer, her daughters Lara Bruhn (Matthew) and Karen Peltier (Edward), her grandsons Simon Bruhn, Owen Bruhn, and Nathan Peltier and her granddaughter Clare Peltier.

Mary Lou was a passionate supporter of the arts and arts education. She developed children's' programs at The Hermitage in Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey. During nine years in Paris, she was co-founder and co-leader of Exploring Paris, which provided tours for OECD spouses, and she was an active volunteer at the American School of Paris. After returning to the US in 1993, she conducted tours of the Decatur House on Lafayette Park and the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC.  After coming to New York, she gave tours as a docent of the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York for more than 20 years. She was committed to sharing her knowledge and love for contemporary art with others. She also worked as a volunteer with students at Paul Robeson High School in Brooklyn. She believed firmly that all young people deserved the same advantages  that she was able to provide for her own children.

Outside of her career, Mary Lou Shafer had a deep appreciation for jazz and a keen eye for contemporary art, which was reflected in the art she collected with her husband Jeff. The arts, music, education, and family were at the center of Mary Lou’s life.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Bailey's Cafe, a charitable organization that Mary Lou supported. Bailey's Cafe, 324 Malcolm X Boulevard, Brooklyn, NY 11233

Mary Lou Shafer's life was filled with dedication to her daughters and grandchildren and love for her husband. She will be deeply missed by them, her friends, and all those whose lives she touched.

Funeral Services

Memorial Service

December 22, 2023

10:30 AM to 12:30 PM

Greenwich Village Funeral Home

199 Bleecker Street

New York, NY 10012

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