Mary Jeanne Goins always had an interest in theater but thought she would have difficulty balancing an acting career with raising children.

So she became an elementary-school teacher instead. When Goins retired, however, she embarked on a second career modeling and appearing in TV commercials for Nike, Disney and Carnival Cruise Lines.

"She just had a sparkle about her that … came across on film," said her daughter, Jan Carusiello of Orlando.

Goins, of DeLand, died July 22 of bone cancer. She was 93.

Born in Indianapolis, she attended beauty school for a year before marrying her husband, Jim, whom she met at a skating rink when she was a teenager. They were married for 61 years when he died in 2001.

When her children entered school, she attended classes at Ball State University. After graduating in her mid-30s, she taught elementary school for about 25 years.

Goins spent most of that time in Indiana, though she briefly taught in Florida. After Goins graduated, her husband told her the family could move wherever she wanted. Goins chose to move to Miami Beach and then to Orlando, where she taught at Pine Hills Elementary School. But she soon returned to Indiana with her husband and children after a family member became ill.

Growing up, Carusiello said, "I can't remember a day with my brother that didn't involve laughing. It was just a warm environment."

Goins retired in 1981 and moved to DeLand. Knowing that her mother was interested in theater, Carusiello sent her picture to an agent.

"It just kind of took off from there," Carusiello said.

Goins appeared in both print ads and TV commercials. The family especially liked a Nike commercial in which she played a grandmother. Goins also portrayed a car accident victim in the TV show "Unsolved Mysteries," Carusiello said, and had a bit part in the 1990 comedy film "Quick Change."

She also acted in local theater productions. Her grandson, Marc Carusiello, who works in television development for 20th Century Fox, remembers watching her in those local shows.

He described Goins as "just always super-funny and super-loving and just the best grandmother you could ever want."

She acted well into her 80s, her daughter said. She also ran a 5K and won in the over-80 age group.

."She always taught us that we could do anything," Carusiello said.

Goins sang in the choir at Trinity Methodist Church in DeLand. She enjoyed walking on the beach and traveling with family and friends.

Goins suffered a stroke about a year ago, and although doctors thought she would have a difficult time recovering, she made a surprising comeback. Then, however, she was diagnosed with bone cancer.

"What ever happened to her in life, she conducted herself with such grace," her daughter said.

Goins also is survived by son Jim Goins of Clearwater; brother Bob Ruble of Indianapolis; and grandson Chris Carusiello of Sierra Leone.

A Community Funeral Home, Orlando, is in charge of arrangements.

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