Marie Louise Pappajohn | Obituary
October 6, 1933 – March 17, 2022
NAPLES, FL-Mary Louise Pappajohn, 88, died March 17, 2022 in Naples, Florida with her family by her side. Mary was born on October 6, 1933 in Minneapolis, Minnesota to Michael and Mariana (Bougris) Limberis. She attended the University of Minnesota earning a BS in Home
Economics in 1955 and after graduation worked for Northern States Power in Minneapolis as a kitchen design expert. Mary moved to Iowa upon her marriage to John George Pappajohn on September 10, 1961, and became an active member of the Des Moines community. She served as president of the Junior League of Des Moines, president of Goodwill of Central Iowa, and president of the Des Moines Chapter of the Daughters of Penelope. Mary’s true passion was the visual arts, and she used her extensive knowledge to rank Pappajohn’s personal collection on Art News Magazine’s Top 200 Art Collectors Worldwide for fifteen years.
consecutive years. In addition to her entire collection, Mary has served on the board of the Des Moines Arts Center, as well as chair of the acquisitions committee. She was also a trustee of the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, a member of the advisory board and national committee of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the national committee of the Whitney Museum, and the collectors’ committee of the National Gallery of Art in Washington. , CC. When they ran out of space to display their sculpture, Mary and her husband created the John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park in Des Moines with the donation of their entire outdoor sculpture collection, which included more than twenty world-renowned works transferred from their home to the Western Gateway. Park. A true philanthropist in every sense of the word, she truly lived to serve others. Mary has received numerous awards and honors, including the Meredith Wilson Heritage Award, Des Moines Bravo Award, Des Moines Art Center Gala Honoree, Hellenic Times Humanitarian Leadership Award, State of Iowa Philanthropist of the Year, and National Philanthropist. of the year for the arts. Among her many others
philanthropies, Mary helped create an endowment at the University of Iowa hospitals to establish the John and Mary Pappajohn Clinical Cancer Center. She has helped fund scholarships for ethnic, disadvantaged and minority students. She helped fund the five John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Centers in Iowa and contributed to the John and Mary Pappajohn Center for Higher Education in Des Moines, IA. Mary was a parishioner of Saint George Orthodox Church in Des Moines and a supporter of the Holy
Transfiguration Greek Orthodox Church in Mason City and its home parish of Saint Mary’s Greek Orthodox Church in Minneapolis. Additionally, she was a member of the Archbishop Iakovos Leadership 100 endowment and a leading supporter of the St. Nicholas National Shrine at the World Trade Center. Mary was a phenomenal cook. She enjoyed entertaining her friends and family and had a large collection of recipes, including many Greek specialties. Among the favorites was her Waldorf Astoria red velvet birthday cake. Mary was adored and loved. Her generous heart and passion for living life will live forever. She was pursued in death by her parents and her brother Tom Limberis. Mary will be sadly missed by her husband, John, her daughter, Ann (RJ), her grandchildren, Nicholas and Alexandra and many friends. May our dear Yiayia Mary rest in peace and her memory be eternal. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Des Moines Art Center in remembrance. Online condolences can be left for the family at www.majorericksonfuneralhome.com.
Arrangements are made with Major Erickson Funeral Home & Crematory, 111 N. Pennsylvania Avenue, Mason City, Iowa 50401, 641-423-0924, www.majorericksonfuneralhome.com.