Cherry Blossoms

Mary Alana Ellis

August 31, 1933 ~ July 29, 2022 (age 88) 88 Years Old


Mary Alana Ellis was raised in Oneanta, New York by her father, an English professor at the college there and her mother.

At the age of 10 her family moved to Washington DC where she attended Friends School until she graduated. While at Friends School she participated in the first exchange program for high school students and was sent to Lille in France where she developed a lifelong relationship with the Debievre Family.

Upon graduation from Friends, she attended Mount Holyoke, the college her mother and aunt also attended. While at Mount Holyoke she again went abroad in an exchange program, this time attending Science Politique in Paris for a year. Upon conclusion of her college degree she met and married John Moffatt Ellis, an Air Force officer, and they moved to Taiwan where they resided for 3 years and where their first child was born. They returned to Washington DC for a year then returned to the Far East, living in Japan, where she studied flower arranging with a master, and where she added Japanese as her third language after English and French.

After 3 years in Japan, they moved to Thailand where they resided for 6 years, and where she became a journalist for the magazine Sawadi. Upon completion of their stay in Thailand the family returned home, stayed first in DC, then moved to California, the home of John Ellis, and took up residence on Belvedere in California. They then moved to Arizona where both Mary Alana and John pursued and obtained master’s degrees in international business from Thunderbird and where MaryAlana picked up her fourth language, Spanish.

They returned to Belvedere, California where she became an editor at CCH. She remained at CCH until she retired at which point, she trained for two years to become a docent at the De Young Museum, specializing in Africa and Oceania.

She travelled all over the world during her retirement and took up sailing at the Corinthian Yacht Club. She moved to North Carolina at the age of 80 and has resided here ever since until she passed away. She is survived by her son and daughter and three grandchildren. She was greatly loved and will be terribly missed.

There are no services planned at this time. 

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Donaldson Funeral Home & Crematory is honored to serve the Ellis family.


No services to be held

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396 West St.
Pittsboro, NC 27312


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