Mary Ann Faunce, 82, formerly of Great Bend

WATERTOWN, NY — Mary Ann Faunce, 82, passed away unexpectedly Monday morning, Dec. 28, 2020, at Samaritan Medical Center having been admitted the day prior with complications from COVID-19.

She was a resident at Samaritan Keep Nursing Home, later moving to Samaritan Summit Village upon the completion of the new nursing home facility.

She was a lifetime resident of Great Bend, NY, where she lived with her husband and raised her family.

On June 2, 1957, Mary Ann was married to James E. Faunce at Grace Episcopal Church, Carthage with Robert W. Nicholls officiating.

Mary Ann Faunce was the daughter of Robert & Geraldine Ehart VanDusen.

She was predeceased by her husband James, a brother Noel VanDusen of Massena, NY and a brother in-law Robert Johnson of Gouverneur, NY

She is survived by her children, Russ and Laurie Faunce of Black River; Rhonda Faunce and Callie Black of Elmira, NY; a sister, Joan Johnson of Tonawanda, NY; a sister in-law Linda VanDusen of Massena, NY; a brother in-law and sister-in-law, John “Jack” and Sue Faunce, Carthage; several nieces and nephews.  Her beloved nephew Craig A. Johnson passed away earlier this year from ALS.  Prior to his passing, she and Craig shared a nightly phone conversation.  She was able to find a great deal of peace and solitude in Craig’s words.

Mary Ann enjoyed just about anything that involved her children.  She regularly attended athletic events up and down the east coast supporting the Elmira College women’s volleyball and softball teams.  In addition, there was not a musical event at Watertown High School where she was not in attendance.  Gatherings with family and conversations with friends were always at the forefront of her thought process and the bright spot in her day.

Mrs. Faunce, a 1956 graduate of Carthage Central School, held several employment positions during her working years.  She worked as a bank teller following high school in Carthage, NY;  worked for several years as a medical receptionist for Dr. William Wiley, Deferiet, NY;  was employed at the local market in Great Bend;  served as a Town of Champion election poll worker and devoted the majority of her adult life to Avon Products as a regional distributor.

She was a member of the Woolworth Memorial United Methodist Church, the Great Bend Volunteer Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary, a local chapter of the Red Hat Society along with several other social clubs and gatherings.

A family viewing and service will be held at the Bruce Funeral home in Black River on Wednesday, December 30th in a private ceremony due to NYS’s COVID-19 restrictions – Rev. Bruce Chapman officiating.  Burial will immediately follow in the Black River Cemetery.

Contributions may be made to Elmira College Athletics at 1 Park Place, Elmira, NY 14901 or the Northern NY Community Foundation – 131 Washington St., Watertown, NY 13601 c/o WHS/Faunce music scholarship.

The Faunce family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the medical professionals and staff at Samaritan for their kindness, care, and compassion.

Online condolences may be made at