Antoinette Theresa Decker

    Antoinette “Ann” Decker nee Cwynar passed away on April 28, 2023, after a brief illness.
    Ann, lovingly known by her family as Tosha, was born to Anthony and Julia Cwynar on December 17, 1930, in Rockford, Illinois. There she attended Bishop Muldoon High School and then University of Wisconsin-Madison where she met Norm, and on June 13, 1953, they married. Shortly thereafter, Norm was drafted into the Army and Ann stayed behind and worked as a grade schoolteacher at Lincoln Park School in Rockford.
    After Norm’s discharge from the Army, in 1956 they moved to Glendale, California, where they raised two children, Norman and Nancy. Although Ann received her credentials to teach in California, Ann gave up her career to raise her family. A beloved mother, her kindness knew no bounds.
    Always generous with her time, Ann volunteered to be a Girl Scout troop leader for many years, a Cub Scout leader and active PTA member at Holy Family Grade School where her children attended school. She also volunteered as a librarian where needed at many schools in the Glendale area and was a member of the Cathy Chapter City of Hope.
    Ann had many hobbies, she was an expert seamstress, baker and gardener. She had a great love and respect for all of God’s creatures and the earth. On Arbor Day she could be found planting trees on her property, ensuring a place of refuge for all the birds and wild animals. In addition to the wild animals Ann loved, she raised and trained her Hungarian Sheepdogs (Puli), earning many awards in obedience training. She and her husband Norm were founding members of the Puli Club of Southern California and worked to promote responsible breeding and care standards.
    Ann had a boundless curiosity and books were her refuge. Once her children were in high school, Ann returned to school to study at USC where she received her master’s degree in library science. She went on to work as a school librarian at Pater Noster High School and later Daniel Murphy High School. Ann loved being around the young students and found great satisfaction in introducing the students to books, imparting the knowledge and wonder that reading could bring to each individual.
    In retirement, Ann and Norm traveled to many countries and across the United States. Always the historian, Ann kept detailed diaries of her travels, making special note of the area’s plants and wildlife.
    Ann’s husband Norm predeceased her, as did her brothers Julian Cwynar and Edward Cwynar. She is survived by her son Norman and his wife Mel, her daughter Nancy and her husband Burt, grandchildren Matthew and Melissa, and many nieces and nephews.
    Funeral Mass to celebrate Ann’s life will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Friday May 26, at Holy Family Catholic Church in Glendale, California. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in her memory to the Pasadena Humane or to the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose.