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Mary Cheryl Mapes Spencer

In Obituaries by OC Monitor Staff

OWENSBORO, Ky. — Mary Cheryl Mapes Spencer, 61, of Owensboro, passed away on Jan. 3, 2022, from injuries from an automobile accident. Cheryl was born Aug. 10, 1960, to Ralph E. Mapes and Patsy Crowe Mapes at St. Margarets Hospital, Lake County, Indiana.

She attended elementary school in Ohio County, Kentucky, and Daviess County, Kentucky. She was a 1978 Graduate of Apollo High School. After graduating, she attended the University of North Alabama, and earned her bachelor’s degree at Brescia University, Owensboro.

Cheryl was the most giving individual people could ever know. As her daughter, Laura put it, “Holidays at our house looked like decorative cups and plates, homemade desserts, and no expense spared on the main dish. It looked like Betty Crocker recipe books and decorating Christmas cookies while she popped her famous homemade popcorn in the kitchen. It looked like pretty aprons and beautiful placemats and music played on the keyboard as we walked in. It looked like a warm smile and a multitude of presents under the tree, several of which we might just get early. It looked like the definition of hospitality with homemade cider and offers for seconds or maybe a to-go box for the road. This year, she stood smiling and waving as we left her driveway on Christmas. I never imagined it could be our last Christmas with her here.”

She loved to entertain. She opened her home often for counseling, prayer meetings, game nights and holidays. She loved to make birthday parties a big deal for her family and friends. Her favorite scripture was Matthew 11:28: “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” She showed the love of Jesus through her generosity and hospitality.

Cheryl is preceded in death by her father, Ralph Edwards Mapes; paternal grandparents, Rev. Forest R. and Lula V. (Dunkin) Mapes, Alabama, Arthur L. And Mary Baker Crowe, Ohio County; maternal uncles, AJ Crowe, and Wendell M. Crowe; her nephew, Jonathan Wesley Mapes; and two grandchildren, Liv Carlieze and Jettson John Michael Murphy.

Survivors include her husband, John, who she would have been married to for 40 years in April; her mother, Patsy Herrell, of Owensboro; stepfather, Jeffrey Herrell, of Reynolds Station, Kentucky; her two daughters, who she was so proud of include, Lisa (Brandon) Grigsby and Laura (Josh) Murphy, of Owensboro; seven grandchildren who she adored, Jonah Murphy, Lily Murphy, Gabriella Grigsby, Dani Kate Grigsby, Oliver Grigsby, Josiah Murphy, and Judson Murphy; brother, Eddie (Judy) Mapes, of Calhoun, Kentucky; aunt, Rebecca Jean “Pat” Crowe, of Newburgh, Indiana; and several nephews and nieces.

Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. on Friday at RiverTree Church, 600 Salem Drive, Owensboro, KY 42303. Burial will follow in Owensboro Memorial Gardens. Visitation is from 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursday at RiverTree Church. James H. Davis Funeral Home & Crematory is in charge of arrangements.

Online messages of condolence may be made at

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