Mary Civilla Peduzi was born on Christmas Day, 1929, at a farmhouse near Mapleton, Iowa, to Francis and Richard Sonksen. She was raised with seven siblings on a farm. She graduated from Mapleton HS in 1948. In 1950 she had mild non paralytic polio with side effects into 1951. She graduated from and received a nursing certificate from St. Joseph Mercy School of Nursing in 1951. On November 22, 1952, she married Robert Peduzi. They raised their children, Michael, born in 1953, and Carol, 1957, mostly in San Clemente, California. In 1975 Mary and Bob moved to Huntington Beach where they lived until her passing, May 9, 2022.
With nursing being her passion, she returned to school in 1969 and after attending Long Beach State, received her B.S. in Nursing from UCLA in 1972, followed by an M.S in Nursing Education, from UCLA in 1974. While finishing her Masters she joined the faculty in Pediatrics at UCI Medical Center. In 1982 she received a joint faculty appointment with the Departments of Pediatrics and Ob/Gyn. She served as Adjunct Professor, CSU Long Beach, from 1974 to 1991, and Lecturer, UC Irvine, from 1975 to 1991. She was instrumental in writing many grants from 1975 through the late eighties. In 1983 she became Coordinator of Perinatal Outreach that worked closely with March of Dimes, United Way, and Orange County and California State hospital councils that dealt with several important perinatal health care issues. She received the Certificate of Appreciation Award from March of Dimes four times from 1984-1989, and Outstanding Community Service in 1991.
In her retirement years she became involved with genealogy and researched her family history. She also did crochet, painted, and enjoyed watching sports such as baseball and football.
Mary is survived by her son Michael, Huntington Beach, her daughter Carol Spencer (Kevin), Klamath Falls, Oregon, her granddaughter Danielle Spencer, Huntington Beach, and great grandson, Dominic Vieyra, Huntington Beach. She is survived by siblings: Walt, Anna, Marvin, Elmer, and Fern, all of Iowa. Mary was preceded in death by her husband Robert, in 2008, and two of her older siblings: Mildred in 1995, and Beulah in 2016.