In Loving Memory of Maria Turco-McArdle
Maria Jane Turco-McArdle passed away at age 29 on March 13th, 2021, after a long courageous and brave fight against cancer.
Maria is predeceased by her loving grandparents, Edward Turco and Anita Weiland (Michael’s parents) and Henry and Jane Willams (Cheryl’s parents); also by sister, Emily Turco.
Maria is survived by her husband Paul McArdle; parents, Michael and Cheryl Turco; siblings, Jennifer Ruffell, Ryan Turco (Catherine Turco), Charlene Johnson-Hennig (Tommy Gaffney), and Nicholas Turco; nieces, Emily Ruffell and Hayleigh Gaffney; nephews, Benjamin Ruffell, Jaden Hennig, Noah Turco and Henry Turco; Along with many dear Aunts, Uncles, Cousins and close friends.
Maria was beautiful inside and out, a genuine, kind, loving soul. Despite her short time on Earth, she left a huge mark. Maria dedicated her time giving to others, spreading love and joy in whatever she was doing. She was unrelentlessly herself in everything she did and everything she believed in. She never compromised what she stood for to pacify others. Maria helped give others a voice when they were unable to do so for themselves. Maria was “all in” when she loved and she gave it so freely, without fear of getting hurt or with the expectation of getting anything in return.
Family and friends were extremely important, if not the most important thing to Maria. Maria cherished all of her roles, she was a daughter, a girlfriend, in her final days a wife, an aunt, a sister, a niece, a cousin and a friend to so many. She took her role as a “doxie mom” very seriously and thought of her little dog Rosie as her baby. That daschund was probably one of the most spoiled dogs around. Maria’s love for her husband Paul, their love for each other, is something that only a few get to experience, truly a love of a lifetime. Her connection with her younger brother Nick was nothing short of incredible, the two of them were as thick as thieves and had an unspoken language most would never be able to understand. Maria was known as Aunt Mimi to all her nieces and nephews. She had a magical way of connecting with all of them and creating a special bond, each and every one of them felt her love. To Maria, her friends were her family and her heart had room for everyone.
Maria graduated from Penfield high school in 2009 and then Nazareth college in 2013 with her degree in social work. Despite her aggressive treatment schedule over the last year, Maria recently completed her masters degree from the University of New Hampshire. Maria was determined to finish her studies and become a MSW. Her dream was to work with the youth in a private practice setting.
Maria put in countless hours connecting with young people, it truly was her passion. Over the years Maria found many ways to work with children; whether it was her drum circles, teenage girl support groups, internships working with children of refugee status, participating in or leading many programs that supported kids with different abilities, or empowering young girls to find their inner princess. Maria always just knew the right way to connect with people and what they needed to feel special and included.
In recent years Maria found great joy in being part of the Cobblestone Players, her love for the theater blossomed and acting became very important to her and part of her identity. Regardless if she was behind the stage helping with the production or performing front and center, Maria loved every minute of it.
Music was a huge part of Maria’s life. Her tastes were eclectic, ranging from Aerosmith, to Ella Fitzgerald and Carrie Underwood. Maria loved to feel and experience music, whether it was listening, singing or dancing. Some of her favorite time was spent with her grandmother Jane listening to and discussing jazz. Even in her final days, when asked what words she wanted to leave for her younger brother Nick, she decided to make up a song. For as sick as she was, she found the strength to sing and dance from her bed. One of her greatest joys with music was sharing it with her husband Paul, it created many memorable moments for them.
Maria had a zest for life that could not be broken. She left quite a legacy for as young as she was, along with many valuable lessons for all the lives she touched. At the end of Maria’s journey here on Earth, her final thoughts were not ones of selfishness or anger, as someone in her position so rightfully may have, but rather it was thoughts for others. Concerned how her family would cope and for their sadness. Even in the darkest of moments she created love and light and that is how she will always be remembered.
Special thanks to the outpouring of love and support from family and friends, it has been truly amazing and comforting in such a difficult time.
The family would like to thank the Wilmot Cancer Center for their care of Maria over the last 14 months. Dr. Victor, Dr. Constine and nurse Jeff, along with the rest of the team were absolutely incredible and really went above and beyond. They treated Maria as if she were their family member. Also many thanks to Dr. Diamond and the entire palliative care team at URMC. Their kindness and compassion allowed Maria to be comfortable and move on to Heaven with dignity and peace.
The family will lay Maria to rest with a private internment service March 24th. There will be a Celebration of Maria’s Life held on April 30th, this would have been her 30th birthday. Family will provide details at a later date. Due to capacity restrictions, space is limited for in-person attendance. There will be a live streaming of the event so people can attend virtually. The family is appreciative of everyone’s understanding in needing to be creative in accommodating the large number of people, who have so kindly expressed interest in attending any services.
In lieu of flowers please consider making a donation to Cobblestone Arts Center in Maria’s name. This place was very near and dear to Maria and to the entire Turco family. Donations can be sent directly to the center at 1622 NY-332, Farmington, NY 14425 or online at www.cobblestoneartscenter.com. Please indicate the donation is in memory of Maria.
“No matter what LOVE looks like, it comes in all shapes and sizes, it doesn’t matter who it’s with, everyone deserves it.” – Maria (3/10/2021)