On Friday, Feb. 5, 2021, Ann Theresa Howell passed away peacefully, surrounded by loved ones, at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth. She was 77.
Ann was born June 13, 1943, in Naliboki, Poland, to Edward and Mary (Stasiukiewicz) Niecko during the height of World War II. Her family was forced out of Poland by the Nazis and lived in Germany until the end of the war. In January 1951, Ann and her family moved to Traverse City, Mich., where her father worked on an apple orchard. The family later moved to Aquebogue, N.Y., where they put down roots.
Ann graduated from Riverhead High School in 1962 and shortly thereafter met and fell in love with Phil Howell, a young airman from New Jersey. They were married in November 1964 and, being an Air Force family, they set off to travel the world and start a family. Michael was born in February 1967 and Michelle came along in July 1972. Together they traveled all over the United States, from Arizona to Florida and even across the Pacific Ocean to the Philippine Islands for three years.
Phil retired from the Air Force in 1984 and the family moved, once again, to Azle, Texas, in 1986, and lived there until 1997. Phil and Ann, now empty nesters, moved to Columbus, Miss., where they spent eight years before finally retiring to Pace, Fla., in 2005. Phil and Ann lived in Pace for almost 15 years before moving to Weatherford, Texas, in November 2019 to be closer to their children and grandchildren.
Ann traveled all over the world throughout her life, first fleeing a war-torn Europe, then as an Air Force wife, but she always made a point to return home to family. Phil and Ann would make annual road trips back to New York, New Jersey and North Carolina to visit their parents and siblings. They would also make twice-yearly trips to see their children and grandchildren. Family was always the backbone of Ann’s life and she always made them a priority.
In her early years with Phil, Michael and Michelle, Ann was a dedicated wife and mother, head cheerleader for the family’s sporting endeavors and an excellent bowler in her own right. In her later years, one might find Ann cozied up on the couch reading a book, watching the New York Mets on TV or watching movies on the Hallmark Channel, no matter what time of year it was. She will truly be missed and is loved by all who knew her.
Ann was preceded in death by her father, Edward, her mother, Mary, and brothers John, Tony and Bernard. She is survived by her loving husband, Phil; her sister, Stasia Grabowski; son Michael and his wife, Judy; daughter Michelle Horton and her husband, Reagan; grandchildren Douglas and Madeline Horton and Alexis Howell.
This is a paid notice.