Mary Jane Woods, “Whirl Wind”, 67, of Colchester, passed away on Saturday, January 23, 2021 at Middlesex Hospital in Middletown. Born December 21, 1953 in Grand Island Nebraska; she was a daughter of the late Mariano and Betty Rodriguez. Mary was very passionate and proud of her Native American background; she was part of a lineage that could be traced directly back to Geronimo. Mary was a proud member of the American Indian Movement (A.I.M) and participated in several protests to help advance Native American causes, most notably protesting at the former Alcatraz Prison. For over 20 years Mary worked as the Arts and Crafts Coordinator for the Pequot Tribe, where she created numerous tribal regalia and other works of art for ceremonies and had the honor of having several pieces of her art on display in the Smithsonian museums. In her spare time Mary enjoyed traveling across the country with her husband Robert, the two of them would share a motorcycle and go on road trips for weeks at a time. She is survived by her husband Robert J. Beckman; daughter Eva (Joshua) Avery; stepchildren Jerry Beckman, Mark Cargo and Heather Fouse; grandchildren Isaiah, Ahviel, Cameron, Barry and Rilee; and many other numerous extended family and friends. Walk through calling hours will be held on Friday, January 29 from 4-7 PM at the Aurora-McCarthy Funeral Home, 167 Old Hartford Rd, Colchester. All who wish to attend must wear a mask. In lieu of flowers the family asks that memorial donations be made to Mary’s Go Fund Me page https://gofund.me/b8c1c706 For online condolences, please visit www.auroramccarthyfuneralhome.com
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