Mary Lou Sprowle


Mary Lou Sprowle, 84, passed away on May 9 at her home in Pagosa Springs, Colo. She was born on July 22, 1937, in Wilmington, Ohio. She grew up just down the street from the Murphy Theatre, so she spent her childhood watching every movie that came out. She always aspired to be a movie star and would spend hours in her room singing along to all her records. She never became an actress, but she will always be our star. 

She loved music, dancing and laughing, and despised dishes, cooking and housework. When a good song came on, she was dancing, it did not matter if she was in the living room or the grocery store. Often, she would get tickled at the most inopportune times and laugh until she cried. Folks would think she had been moved by the spirit, but we knew better. She had the best sense of humor and loved being with her family more than anything. 

She is survived by her husband, David Sprowle. They were married on April 8, 1955, and just celebrated their 67th anniversary. They have four children: Steve (Rhonda) Sprowle, of Wilmington, Ohio; Lisa West, of Sierra Vista, Ariz.; Scott (Kathy) Sprowle, of Wilmington, Ohio; and Molly Sprowle, of Pagosa Springs, Colo. They have three granddaughters, a grandson, great-grandchildren and their adopted children and grandchildren who lived next door. 

She enjoyed reading (no e-books), it had to be a “real book.” She loved to crochet baby blankets and make quilts. Another favorite hobby was genealogy, or as she called it, “playing with dead people.” She would get so excited when she found out she was related to someone famous. 

She loved to spend her summers riding the train in Chama, N.M. She always looked forward to the new season where she could ride the train, see her train friends, people watch, look at the scenery and relax. 

She was so loved by her family and friends and is missed terribly. The world is a lot less sparkly without her in it. 

She did not want anyone to make a fuss and did not want a funeral. If you choose, you can make a donation in her name to: The Murphy Theatre in Wilmington, Ohio; The John Wayne Birthplace Museum in Winterset, Iowa; or Rise Above Violence in Pagosa Springs, Colo. That is something she would have liked.