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Mary Ellen King, 76, Boston, died November 29, 2022, finally succumbing to her 18-year battle with cancer. The oldest of six, she grew up in West Roxbury, attending Holy Name School and Girls’ Latin School and then moved to New York for college, graduating from Barnard College in 1968. In New York, she worked for CBS News and the Ford Foundation before moving back to Boston where she worked as a freelance writer. A 30-year resident of Back Bay, Mary started a career placing senior executives for non profits in 1994, first working for executive search firm Isaacson, Miller and then starting her own firm for which she closed a search a few months before she died. Her clients included the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate, Vera Institute of Justice and Engineering World Health.
An avid news junkie whose interests ranged from US, UK and Irish politics to fashion, interior design, gardening and travel, she was full of recommendations for everything from hotels in Paris and London to podcasts and books and had an encyclopedia of knowledge so reliable that when it came to disputed facts, family history and grammar, she was the ultimate authority, the “Supreme Court.” A relentless bargain shopper, she was a fixture in Newbury and Charles Streets’ shops and boutiques. She loved good food and good conversation, both of which she indulged in regularly at her favorite Back Bay and South End restaurants. She also loved helping prepare holiday family feasts in Connecticut, especially Christmas.
Mary Ellen was predeceased by her parents Marietta and Thomas and her sister Nancy. She is survived by four siblings, Patricia of San Anselmo, CA and her husband Harold, Thomas of Arlington, VA and his wife Ann, Michael of Lincoln, MA and his wife Karen, Eileen of Darien, CT and her husband Scott. She is also survived by her beloved nieces and nephews, Peter, Michael, Tommy, Marietta, Madeline, Jenna, Anna, and Casey and the joys of her later years, grand nieces and nephews Daphne, Charlie, Warner and Nora.
Mary’s family is planning a memorial service in the spring. In lieu of flowers, the King family asks that donations in her memory be made to the Power of Flowers Project whose flower arrangements provided much comfort in her final weeks as did her CareOne Concord caregivers. Power of Flowers Project, PO Box 294, Tewksbury, MA 01876, www.pofproject.org.