Full Obituary For Former Mario’s Restaurant Matriarch; Memorial Announced For Dec. 3

OCEAN CITY — Vera Frances Maiorana of Ocean City died in the serenity of her home on Sunday, Nov. 20, 2016 at the age of 96.

Born near Berlin, she was the only daughter of the late Clayton and Pearl Butler Adkins. Her family always called her “Sister.” She attended Ocean City High School and graduated, Class of 1938.

Vera Frances Maiorana

Vera Frances Maiorana

Shortly after graduation, she married Jack Maiorana, of Baltimore, and started their family. They opened a photo shop on the Boardwalk near Wicomico Street where they took pictures of summer tourists before the coming of the photo booth. They had several good years there but Jack decided he might like to be in the restaurant business. He and a partner tried their hand at the new venture when they leased the Paddock Restaurant in the early 50’s. Before long, it was realized that partnerships are not easy. Wanting to strike out on their own, Jack and Vera bought property “way up the beach” on 22nd Street and Mario’s Restaurant was opened on April 3, 1954.

There, Vera devoted her life until her retirement at 85. There were good times, bad times and tragedies but she persevered. She worked long, hard hours to make Mario’s the enduring success that it was. People still remember the old Carry Out days with the delicious submarine sandwiches and more recently, there were the legendary steaks. It always brought a smile to Vera’s face to hear the many wonderful compliments. Her greatest pleasure was making her customers happy and socializing with them as they came and went. In later years, when customers came in that hadn’t been in for a while, they would peak around to the office and whisper, “Is she still here?!”

Vera’s busy life left little leisure time but, in her younger day, she “played” golf, enjoyed oil painting, gardening and needlework. Traveling was something she wished she had done more of, although she was able to take a few very nice vacations and spend many winter months in warm Arizona. A true highlight of her life was a trip through Austria, Switzerland, Italy and Germany, that included Octoberfest and was accompanied by her German-born friend. She volunteered her time to the Ocean City Volunteer Fire Company Ladies’ Auxiliary, of which she was a Life Member.

Vera was a very kind and generous woman who opened her heart and her home to everyone. Several family members came to live for extended periods of time and she invited an underprivileged young girl from New York City to spend several summers through the Fresh Air Fund. That child became a lifelong friend of the family.

Vera was preceded in death by her beloved son, Mitch Maiorana, her brothers, Ralph, Thomas and Russell Adkins, and Charles Henry, a longtime employee who was like family. She is survived by her daughter, Jackie DeGroft of Ocean City, several nieces and nephews, many dear friends and former employees who became special to her.

Many thanks to all those at Coastal Hospice who helped Vera on her last journey and to Buddy and Melissa at Bounds Funeral Home who treated her with the dignity and respect of a loved one.

In keeping with Vera’s wishes, there will be a gathering of her friends, family and all those who cared about her to share memories and celebrate her life. It will be held at the Ocean City Lions’ Den on Saturday, Dec. 3, 2016 at 5:00 PM. Her final resting place will be at Sunset Memorial Park in Berlin next to Mitch and Charlie.

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Vera’s memory to the Ocean City Paramedic Foundation, P.O. Box 3899, Ocean City, Md. 21843, the Ocean City Volunteer Fire Company, P. O. Box 27, Ocean City, Md. 21843, or the Ocean City Volunteer Fire Company Ladies’ Auxiliary, P.O. Box 518, Ocean City, Md. 21843

Visit www.boundsfuneralhome.com to send letters of condolence.