After moving to Hawaii in 1968 Mary Lou became very active in theatre. She appeared on stage at Windward Theatre and Diamond Head Theatre where she met her husband, retired US Army LTC Robert Sandla during a rehearsal for the musical "Kismet". They married in 1974 and lived in Hawaii Kai. It was indeed "Fate".
A classically trained soprano Mary Lou was for many years a member of the Honolulu Symphony Chorus and the Hawaii Opera Theatre Chorus. While earning a Master of Arts degree in Drama and Theatre from UH, Manoa Mary Lou joined SAG/AFTRA and worked as a background actor on the original Hawaii 5-0 and the original Magnum PI as well being cast in a principal role on the "Brian Keith" TV show. In addition she served as a Board of Directors member at Manoa Valley Theatre, chaired the Women's Association of the Honolulu Symphony, substitute taught at a number of local High Schools and directed a summer arts production program at Punahou school.
In 1991, Mary Lou and her husband retired and moved to Sawgrass Country Club in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fl. They both became avid golfers and volunteered at the famous Players Championship Tournament. At Sawgrass Country Club Mary Lou was elected Chair person of the Women's Association, and at her church in Ponte Vedra Beach became a member of the choir. However, after much travel and visits with mainland relatives and many new friendships Hawaii called. Mary Lou and her husband could not resist.
Upon returning to Honolulu in 2005 she resumed painting, reunited with many old friends and continued her love of singing as a choir member at Holy Trinity Church until failing health intervened.
After a life truly well lived, Mary Lou is survived by her husband, her daughters by her first marriage, Denice Usherwood of Taos, NM, and Deborah Dearing of Santa Rosa Ca, stepsons Robert Jr. of New York City, Ray Sandla, his wife Maile Hirota of Honolulu and their daughters Kathryn and Georgia Sandla.
Church service and celebration of life will be announced at a later date.
Arrangements Provided By: Diamond Head Mortuary Chapel