Cover photo for Mary Elizabeth Field's Obituary
Mary Elizabeth Field Profile Photo

Mary Elizabeth Field

d. June 25, 2023

Mary E Field passed away peacefully at home on June 25, 2023 with her daughters in attendance.
Born Mary Elizabeth Strebel in Southampton, NY on March 29, 1931,the middle child of Louis and Clara Strebel, grew up
in Center Moriches, NY and lived there most of her life. Pre-deceased by her husband Van R Field, she is survived by her
daughters Gail Field, of Center Moriches, NY and Holly Borak and husband Gerry Borak, of Yorktown, VA. Mary is also
survived by 4 grandsons, 3 great-grandchildren with one more on the way; and sister Jeanette Bonk of Blue Point. She
lived a very full life.
As a young woman she worked in the family business, The Sunrise Restaurant in Center Moriches (now the Sea Cove).
She started peeling potatoes and washing dishes, then moved on to be a waitress, baker and short order cook as time
went on.
At the insistence of her husband, she acquired an amateur radio license (K2BRC) and built a working radio. There were
few things she would say she couldn’t do, from sewing dresses for herself and children, to making props for kindergarten
graduation, baking cakes for weddings, birthdays, graduations and more. She cut down trees before breakfast for her
new home to be built, painted and finished portions of the house.
She also catered various affairs for friends and family. Her home was always open to friends of her husband and
daughters. Mary preferred to have people to her home rather than to go out. She hosted many parties for the radio
club, BOCES teachers, Coast Guard Auxiliary, and High School proms.
Never one to sit still, she took courses in “Home Extension”, later teaching those same skills to others. She was named
“Homemaker of the Year” in 1978. She was a 4-H group leader, in which her daughters participated. She was also a
substitute teacher for BOCES cooking and baking classes, taught adult education classes in catering.
After her husband retired, she coaxed him into writing a local history book, “The Illustrated History of the Moriches Bay
Area” as it was a project they could work on together. She was always interested in local history, and since he had a
minor in history it was a good plan. She became active in the Moriches Bay Historical Society. She worked as a volunteer
worked on cataloging donations to its museum for 17 years and served as president for one term. Shortly thereafter she
became a founding member of the Ketcham Inn Foundation; she worked tirelessly there to raise funds for its restoration
for nearly 30 years.
In 2017 she was honored as a Center Moriches High School Alumni of Distinction for her contributions to the
community. In 2018 she received recognition from the Town of Brookhaven Office of Women’s Services 32ndWomen’s
Recognition ceremony.
Mary was always one to step in to do what needed to be done, a loving parent and a staunch friend. She will be missed
by many.
A memorial is planned for a later date at the Ketcham Inn in Center Moriches. In lieu of flowers donations to East End
Hospice or the Ketcham Inn would be appreciated.

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