In Memory of





Obituary for Mary Ellen Hatcher (Ruzicka)

Mary Ellen Ruzicka Hatcher, 87, passed from this life on February 19, 2023, in the comfort of her home. She was born in Oak Park and grew up in Warrenville, Illinois. Following in her father and grandfather’s footsteps, she attended Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, earning her Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy. After college, she practiced her trade in her father’s store, Ruzicka Drugs. She met and married the love of her life, Walter Franklin Hatcher. She followed her husband, who served in the US Army, to various places, finally ending up in Lake Charles, Louisiana, where they made their home for the last 46 years.

Mary Ellen was a devout Catholic and attended Our Lady Queen of Heaven, where she attended Perpetual Adoration for thirty years and, more recently, Saint Margaret’s Catholic Church. She was an avid reader, loved playing bridge and sudoku, and was a whiz with numbers. Mary Ellen was a Life Master in the American Contract Bridge League.

Mrs. Hatcher is preceded in death by her parents, Edmund James Ruzicka and Helen Marie Rapp Ruzicka; brothers, Richard “Dick” and Gerald “Jerry” Ruzicka; great-granddaughter, Faith Michele Montgomery and great-great-granddaughter, Scarlett Faith Richard.

She leaves to cherish her memory her husband of 63 years; children, Michele Abshire and husband Tim; John Hatcher and wife Susan, and Jeanne Chaffin and husband Luke; five loving grandchildren, twelve great-grandchildren, two great-great-grandchildren, and her two siblings, Clare Imholtz and husband August and Ed Ruzicka and wife Renee; sisters-in-law, Sarah Ruzicka and Cindy Ruzicka and a host of nieces and nephews.

The family would like to thank Tracy Ozane, Pat Guillory, Sophia January, along with Brighton Bridge Hospice for their compassionate and excellent care during Mrs. Hatcher’s brief illness.

The family will receive friends on Thursday, February 23, 2023, in the sanctuary of First Nazarene Church located at 3940 Holly Hill Road, Lake Charles, LA 70605, from 9:30 AM until 11:30 PM. A rosary will be prayed at 11:00 AM. Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Thursday, February 23, 2023, at 12:00 Noon at Saint Margaret’s Catholic Church. Rev. Nathan Long is to officiate. Burial will follow at Highland Memory Gardens.

Memories and words of comfort may be shared with the family at