Cover photo for Mary Katherine Frerker Young's Obituary
Mary Katherine Frerker Young Profile Photo
1934 Mary 2023

Mary Katherine Frerker Young

July 22, 1934 — April 7, 2023

Mary Katherine Frerker Young, 88, peacefully passed away Good Friday, April 7, 2023, and returned to God’s loving embrace. Mary was born July 22, 1934, in Carlyle, Ill., a town of about 2,000 people an hour east of St. Louis, Mo., to Leo B. “Pete” Frerker and Helena Elizabeth Westermann Frerker.

To say Mary had a lifelong love of music would be an understatement. She glorified God in song from the earliest moments of her life, learned to play piano and organ from her uncle Father Edward Westermann, and treasured Sunday mornings as a child when her Grampa Westermann played the violin, she and Edward played piano, and the whole family gathered around to sing and dance. She sang in all of the St. Mary’s Catholic Church choirs and in seventh grade began playing organ every morning for mass. Mary’s talents were so renowned that at age 13 she was hired to play piano and sing at the local saloon, accompanied of course by Pete.

Mary was the oldest of six children, Lee, Martha, Philip, Betsy and Tom. Mary was passionate about nursing and education. She graduated, President of her class, with a Bachelor of Nursing degree from St. Louis University in 1956, worked a year at the university hospital and went on to teach nursing at Mizzou. Later she earned a Master’s degree in Health Administration from the University of Cincinnati and went on to direct 5 nursing care facilities in Southern Ohio.

Mary met James Bruce Young on Feb. 14, 1959, and later joked that it was “love at first sight for me—and I made it my business to make sure that if he didn’t feel that way, he would.” She married Jim on Aug. 29, 1959. Mary and Jim moved around the country as they grew their family to four children, Christine, James, Jerold and Robert, and eventually settled in the Cincinnati area to raise them.

She was a warm, compassionate, and practical person. She fiercely went after what she wanted. Mary was a devout Catholic. She was never judgmental and was always open-minded. Mary held her ground with her four rowdy children but also gave them leeway and love. She cherished her grandchildren and loved to sit around the piano and sing with them all at holidays. Mary loved to laugh. She also loved chocolate.

She left her family some words of advice: “Face your problems with faith”; “Love music! All music! [But] stay away from rap”; and “Be a good listener, especially for people who need a good listener.” She emphasized to her family the need to be close with God and to prioritize faith in their lives. In a 1998 recording of her life story, Mary said, “If you have a true, innermost, heartfelt love of God, you have this friend who can make anything happen.”

Mary is preceded in death by her husband James, her daughter Chris, and her siblings Martha (Hershel) Bateman and Philip.

Mary leaves behind three sons, Jim (Nancy), Jerry (Amy) and Rob (Angie); 10 grandchildren, Ashley (Quinton), Cory (Priscilla), Lindsey, Elizabeth (Patrick), Rebecca, Nicholas, Michael, David, Steven and Rachel; and three great-grandchildren, Natalie, Darrion and Sophie; as well as her siblings Lee (Diane), Betsy (E.J.) Cunningham and Tom (Mary).

Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:00 AM on Saturday, April 22, 2023 at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Carlyle with Rev. George Mauck officiating. Interment will follow at St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery in Carlyle.

Visitation will be held from 9:00 until 10:00 AM on Saturday, April 22, 2023 at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Carlyle.

Memorials made in memory of Mary are suggested to St. Mary's Catholic Church and will be received at church or Nordike Funeral Home, 740 Fairfax Street, Carlyle, IL 62231.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Mary Katherine Frerker Young, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, April 22, 2023

9:00 - 10:00 am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Mass

Saturday, April 22, 2023

Starts at 10:00 am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Photo Gallery

Visits: 31

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree