Pamela McCrory was the kind of person who made everyone better just by knowing her.
She had a strong work ethic, a giddy laugh and a generous and caring heart.
McCrory, 56, died April 18 from Covid-19 after seemingly being on the upswing from the novel coronavirus she came down with two weeks earlier. Things took a turn for the worse that afternoon, and she died early that evening shortly after being taken by ambulance from her South Buffalo home to Mercy Hospital.
"The ambulance asked if she wanted to go to the hospital and she said yes," her husband, William, said. "And that was the last time I saw her."
The former Pamela Janusz was born in Jamestown and grew up in Cheektowaga. Shortly after graduating from West Seneca East, where she played intramural basketball, she got a job at Sisters Hospital washing pots and pans. She later became dietary supervisor, a job she held for 30 of her 38 years at the hospital.
"Pam was a very strong and stable person, someone you could really rely on," said Karen Ostrum, director of food and nutrition services at Mercy Hospital. "She was well respected by the people she worked with, and never asked someone to do something she wouldn't do herself. She really looked out for other people, and they recognized that in her.
"She wanted nothing more than to be happy, and she really took pleasure in very small things. She also tried to find humor in almost anything," Ostrum said.
William McCrory, her husband of 38 years, said his wife took care of "everything," including tending to their daughter Gabrielle, who turned 18 the day her mother died.
"I would hand her my check after keeping my cut for my own spending, and she did the rest," McCrory said. "She cooked, she cleaned, shopped, worked her own full-time job, ran my daughter around to her sports stuff, doctors appointments, you name it. She did everything."
The couple, who spent most of their years together in South Buffalo, worked together on several occasions to raise money for disabled American veterans.
"I can't stress enough that she would give the shirt off her back for whatever she got involved in," McCrory said. "She would do anything for anybody, and she loved that kid beyond belief," he said of their daughter.
Pamela McCrory loved animals and owned multiple cats and dogs over the years, as well as a horse. She also enjoyed cooking.
"We didn't have basic meals," William McCrory said. "It was all kinds of stuff. She wanted to try everything."