Mary Elizabeth Banks Roach of Flanders died on August 2 at Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead. She was 78.
Born on April 8, 1936, to George Washington Banks and Easter Lee Banks, both of whom predeceased her, in Hertford, North Carolina, she attended P.W. Moore High School in North Carolina. On June 8, 1957, she married Charlie Roach Jr.; the couple had five children. Known to many as “Nana,” Ms. Roach worked hard for her family, cleaning homes and working at Grumman Memorial Park for 14 years. While working for Grumman, she received a model of an F-14, a gift she cherished. When her children were young, she would remove it from its case and they would marvel at how the plane worked.
A gifted storyteller, she regaled the family with tales of her youth and living on a farm.
She enjoyed gospel music and sang in the First Baptist Church choir for more than 50 years. She guided all of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren toward the church.
Ms. Roach was predeceased by a daughter, Darlene Roach, in 1974. She is survived by her husband, Charlie Roach Jr.; four children, Grinda Roach, Charles Victor Roach, Angela Roach, all of Riverhead, and Sheila Roach of North Carolina; 10 grandchildren, Renee Roach, Scottie Roach, Giselle Douglas, Justen Brown, Brandan Roach, all of Riverhead, Latasha Roach, Joshua Roach and Michael Roach of South Carolina, Deja Hoskins of North Carolina, and Darrick Roach of Patchogue. She is also survived by 12 great-grandchildren; two brothers, William Ray Banks and George Washington Banks Jr. of Southampton; two sisters, Laura Harris and Ethel Riddick of Southampton; and many nieces and nephews.
Visitation was at the First Baptist Church in Southampton on August 7. A funeral service was held at the church on August 8. Burial was at Calverton National Cemetery. Funeral arrangements were under the direction of the Brockett Funeral Home in Southampton.