Mary Tappe Barbaro (née Michel),96

January 29, 2024

Mary Tappe Barbaro (née Michel) of Concord passed away peacefully on January 24 at Emerson Hospital.

Mary was born October 12, 1927 in Freeport, IL to Mildred and Clement Michel, graduated from Aquin High School and earned a BA in English from Clarke College in Dubuque, IA in 1948. Mary wed Dick Tappe in 1949, and they moved to Stevens Point, WI to put down roots.

In 1957, they adopted their son, Jimmy, followed by Mary Jane in 1960. Mary then earned a Masters of Library Science from University of Wisconsin in the late 60s.

The family relocated to Concord in 1974. After her husband passed away in 1980, Mary went to work for Sentry Insurance until retirement in 1995.

In 1991, after losing her son Jimmy to the AIDS crisis, Mary channeled her loss into the AIDS Quilt, a global effort to honor those who lost their lives to the epidemic. The panel she lovingly made in Jimmy’s memory is now part of the National AIDS Memorial in San Francisco.

Mary shared her passion for quilting with her family, creating beautiful quilts as baby gifts, which are still treasured to this day. Mary was also an expert knitter, making wool socks, hats, mittens, and scarves as gifts for her loved ones.

Mary was a devout Catholic, and played the organ on Sundays at St. Bernard’s Church for many years. She believed in family, community, kindness, and loved a good crossword puzzle.

Mary is survived by her daughter, Mary Jane Hayes (née Tappe), granddaughter Stephanie Hayes Wyman (Steve) and great-grandchildren Bruce and Valerie, grandsons Brian Hayes (Christine) and Jimmy Hayes, brothers William Michel and Jeron Michel, fourteen nieces and nephews, and countless grand- and great-grand-nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Mildred and Clement, younger sister Jane Smith Melnick (née Michel), nephew Jeffrey Michel, husband Richard Tappe, son Jimmy Tappe, and second husband Jim Barbaro.

Visiting hours in the Dee Funeral Home, 27 Bedford St., Concord, on Tuesday, January 30th from 5 – 7 pm, concluding with a prayer service at 7 pm.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks donations be made in honor of Mary T. Barbaro to AIDS Action/Fenway Health. Donations in Mary’s name can be made at or mailed to AIDS Action/Fenway Health, PO Box 847826, Boston, MA 02284-7826.

Arrangements are entrusted to Dee Funeral Home & Cremation Service of Concord. Please see