Elaine Caroline (Saari) Fitzgerald, died peacefully, with her family at her side on March 14, 2015 at Via Christi St. Francis in Wichita, KS. Elaine was the daughter of Richard and Evelyn Saari, she was born on February 26, 1962 in Nashua, New Hampshire. She was raised in Merrimack, New Hampshire, where she graduated from Merrimack High School in 1980.
On March 28, 1998, she married Mark D. Fitzgerald in Liberal, KS. They fell in love five years earlier. Together they raised their daughters, Kevyn, Jasmine, and Savannah. Mark and Elaine were inseparable, no matter what they were always there for each other.
Many in the Liberal community came to know of Elaine’s infectious smile and upbeat outlook as she was the manager at Spencer Browne’s Coffee House. She gave not only her talent of cooking but also her heart while she shared laughter with her customers. Sharing her smile and energy at work kept her distracted from her battle with leukemia. She kept her head up no matter what challenges she faced through it all and inspired many of her nurses and fellow patients. Elaine had beaten the cancer but sadly, was not able to overcome a low immune system, brought on following her bone marrow transplant.
During Elaine’s life, she enjoyed camping, gardening and making crafts with many items made in a theme of honoring the American flag. One of her greatest joys was spending time with her grandchildren. Grandson, Carter, had a special place in her heart and was often referred to as the son she and Mark never had.
She is survived by her loving husband, Mark of Liberal, KS; 3 Daughters – Kevyn Fitzgerald- Pitts and husband Brandon of Norcross, GA; Jasmine Beck and husband Beau of Reunion, CO; and Savannah Salley of Hays, KS. Mother – Evelyn (Shocik) Saari of Merrimack, NH; 5 Brothers – Rick, Bob, Randy, Ray, and Russ Saari all of Merrimack, NH; 1 Sister- Ella Fusco of Greenfield, NH. 4 Grandchildren: Bryson Pitts, Carter Beck, Wyatt Beck, and Boone Beck.
She was preceded in death by her beloved father, who she cherished dearly, Richard Saari.
Memorial Service will be held at 10:00a.m., Friday, March 20, 2015 at First Presbyterian Church, 1551 N. Western, Liberal, KS. The family will hold a private burial at Restlawn Cemetery. A guest book will be available for signing from 9:00a.m. – 5:00p.m. on Thursday at Brenneman Funeral Home. In Lieu of flowers and plants, Memorial Contributions can be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in care of Brenneman Funeral Home 1212 W. 2nd Liberal, KS 67901.