Mary Jane (fondly known as MJ) Clithero, age 93, of Northcrest Retirement Community, Ames, Iowa died of natural causes on February 18, 2022, in Northcrest Health Care.
Graveside services at Ames Municipal Cemetery will be on March 26, 2022, at 1:30 p.m. A celebration of life will follow at 2:30 p.m. at Collegiate Presbyterian Church, Ames Iowa.
Mary Jane Erickson Clithero was born in Boone, Iowa on December 19, 1928, to Walter J. and Aline Edwards Erickson. Mary Jane graduated from North High School in Des Moines and then attended the University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and Drake University. She married Lt. Robert D. Peterson on April 10, 1948. After his death, she married and divorced Col. Harold E. Fischer. On October 31, 1981, she married Thomas W. Clithero. MJ was a long-time Ames resident and was a trailblazer in the field of real estate in the 1970s becoming one of the first female estate brokers, GRI, CRS. She belonged to the Ames Board of Realtors from 1970 to 1982 and served on the Executive Committee of that Board. She also served on the Board of Trustees for the Octagon Center of the Arts from 1986 to 1990 and on the Ames City Council Board of Review.
She was active in many other volunteer organizations and was a member of Collegiate Presbyterian Church; Chapter LN of P.E.O.; Theta Chi; and Gold Star Wives of America. MJ enjoyed spending time with family and friends and attending her grandchildren's sporting events and activities. She was the ultimate and stylish hostess for dinner parties, birthday clubs, bridge clubs, tailgates, and family reunions.
She is survived by three children: one daughter Dana L. Peterson Fischer of Ames Iowa; two sons: Kurt E. (Shawn) Fischer of Tivoli, New York, and Clint N (Deanna) Fischer of Ankeny, Iowa. In addition, she is survived by two step-daughters: Anne (Gary) Pickering of Centennial Colorado, and Julie (Mark) Ryan of Phoenix, Arizona, and one step-son Douglas (Kim) Clithero of Phoenix Arizona. Grandchildren: Scott (Katie) Keefe, Alexander Fischer, Austin (Amy) Fischer, Pascal Fischer, 8 step-grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren with another one due in April. She is also survived by many dear friends including Virgie Cortner and Nancy Franzenburg.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her sister, Teddy J. Ollrich, her brother-in-law Arthur Ollrich, her husbands, her daughter Katherine Ann Fischer, her sisters-in-law Esther (Glenn) Stutzman, Arlene (Doug) Oakleaf, Olive (Larry) Booth, and Lavonne (John) Erickson, two-step grandchildren, and many friends and family members.
Memorial Contributions may be made to the Collegiate Presbyterian Church, 159 Sheldon, Ames IA 50014, or to the Des Moines North High School Scholarship Fund, 501 Holcomb Avenue, Des Moines, Iowa 50313. Please note that your donation is in honor and memory of Mary Jane.