Mary Beck and Thomas, I was so saddened to hear of Mary Lillian's passing.I had the honor of being mentored by her as a fledgling consultant with the Dept. Of Ed. beginning in 1988 and she was an inspiration to me when watching her maneuver the ins and outs of state government. She was the master. She will be missed and know how much she was loved by all.
Thomas & Mary Beck--My late parents, Ray & Beverly Rountree, considered Mary Lillian a friend. They indicated she was warm, intellectual, and witty. I recall my mother relaying when Mary Lillian was a young woman, M.L. was asked to substitute teach at Gordon High. My mother indicated she was an excellent teacher and that she learned more (in that particular class) from the time Mary Lillian was there than she did the remaining school year. I recall one occasion when my parents saw and visited with your mother at the local doctor's office. I do not believe anyone was feeling physically great that day, however, Mary Lillian had them in "stitches" before they left. She simply had a special disposition! Just wanted to share these moments with you, and to send my deepest condolences. I know that you will miss your mom, however, may treasured memories and God's love bring you comfort and joy.
Mrs. White was a very sweet lady. She and my Mom ate together in the dining room at Lynn Haven. She would always ask how my mother was doing. I will truly miss her. May the Lord comfort your family.
My heartfelt condolences go out to the family of Mary Lillian in the loss of your Mom, Grandmom, and our friend. As one of the initial teachers she selected as she almost single-handedly created the Bibb County Program for the Gifted, I had the good fortune of working many years under her supervision. She was always professional while remaining accessible and supportive of our students, as well as teachers.
One such time was when she volunteered to read to our class on “Death & Dying,” from a children's book, “A Taste of Blackberries” (Doris Buchanan Smith) which, at the time, dealt with the forbidden topic of mortality and grief in children's books.
We gathered in a circle and after acknowledging the authoress as being a fellow Georgian, she began to read from this children's book to a group of 10th. grade young adults. For a moment I had my doubts that she could hold their interest. Then using her dramatic, mellifluent practiced story-telling delivery she engaged us all in the sad death of a child's playmate as the story unfolded. To attest to the effects of her dynamic delivery, there were no dry eyes, even among those teens striving so hard to be “adults” as she slowly closed the book quietly saying “the end”. Such were her gifts and willingness to enhance the learning experiences of everyone.
Hopefully, her memory will serve to encourage others to follow in a life filled with the pleasures of learning, reading, and enjoying service to others. May she rest in peace leaving this as a part of her legacy.