Mary Elizabeth Corbett, 75, died January 22, 2023 from complications of cancer at her home in Camp Hill, PA.
Pook, as she was known, was born Dec. 26, 1947 in Chicago, the oldest of seven children. Her parents, Edward P.J. and Sylvia Mikkelsen Corbett, died in 1998 and 1986 respectively.
Pook was among the last generation of children afflicted with polio since a vaccine became widely available in the late 1950s. At age 5, she was a poster child for the March of Dimes.
Pook overcame her disability to lead a full and productive life with many friends, a large extended family and her beloved cats, Clancy, Pepe and Gigi.
Pook was educated at Omaha’s Duchesne Academy and Creighton University. She graduated in 1969 from Ohio State University with a bachelor’s degree in English.
Pook taught English at Ohio State before moving to Pennsylvania with her then husband, Russ Sheetz. She was passionate about the written word and continued her teaching career after moving.
In her earlier years she worked tirelessly gathering books for the comprehensive annual sale sponsored by the AAUW.
She worked for 30 years at the Navy Supply Depot in the Navy Fleet Materials Support Office until she retired in 2007.
She loved reading the news, especially “The Week”, tirelessly watched C-Span, CNN, MSNBC and finished off with a nightly laugh a la Stephen Colbert whom she idolized.
Pook was a movie enthusiast, and routinely went to theaters with various groups of friends.
Even though she left the teaching profession (too early, sadly, for potential students), she continued her keen interest in educating the young by mentoring students from the Mechanicsburg School District.
She played bridge with various groups of senior seniors –several in their nineties –whose acumen never ceased to amaze her.
Most recently she became involved in a French study group at the Cleve J. Fredrickson Library. This group, her bridge games, and weekly dinners out with longtime friends, were her last important social connections.
Pook was an aunt figure to many friends children, her love was far reaching.
Pook had a way of making people feel special. She delighted at your presence, wanted to know everything about you and was interested whether you were family or someone she just met.
She loved a good conversation and she accepted all viewpoints whether an opposing political party -she sought to understand people.
She was glamourous and never missed a chance to dress to the 9’s. Her sparkling eyes and & bright smile made her easy company and people were drawn to her light. Her energy and joy would light up a room, her positivity, wicked sense of humor and love for all things beautiful made people love her.
She is survived by brothers Jim, John, Peter (Taffy), and Tom (Beth), sister Maureen and sister-in-law Jan. Also, nieces Sophia, Elizabeth, Karina, Jenny and Kelly, plus nephews Peter, Thomas , Austin and 3 grand-nephews. A sister Cathy died in 1986.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the ASPCA.
A private memorial will be held by the family at a later date.
The Sullivan Funeral Home is honored to serve the Corbett family.