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Mary Cox

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Mary Cox Obituary

Mary Dean French Cox
February 3rd, 1922 to April 26th, 2014

The family of Mary Dean Cox, nee French, real estate investor, President of Pensacola Refrigeration Supply, Inc., widow of its founder, the late Charles F. Cox, and devoted homemaker and mother, acknowledges her passing, with gratitude for her full life.

Mrs. Cox, known as Mary Dean to friends, met her husband of fifty three years while they were attending Alabama Polytechnic Institute, later known as Auburn University, where she studied journalism and home economics, and he, architecture and engineering. They were married in 1942 and moved to Pensacola in 1957 after having lived in Baltimore, Md., and Fort Worth, Tex., where Mr. Cox supervised design of U.S. military aircraft for Glenn L. Martin Company and Consolidated Vultee Aircraft Corporation, respectively, during and after WWII, later moving to Washington, D.C., where Mrs. Cox worked for the U.S. Treasury Department and Mr. Cox assisted in the extensive structural renovation of, and additional construction to, the White House during the Truman administration, and opened a wholesale distributorship business before relocating briefly with his wife and young daughter to Jackson, Miss., while deciding upon Pensacola as the location in the south in which to establish a wholesale heating and refrigeration supply distributorship.

Mr. and Mrs. Cox were welcomed to the Pensacola community by former college friends and involved themselves in religious, social, arts, and charitable organizations while rearing three daughters. Mrs. Cox was a past president of the Woman's Club of Pensacola and member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Mt. Vernon Ladies Association, the Pensacola Museum of Art

Guild, the Lydia Class of First Baptist Church of Pensacola, and a member or supporter of other causes and organizations in Pensacola, Fla., and Athens, Ala., including donations of land made jointly with her brother Lifford, and national social and charitable organizations, including the Society of the Debutante Charity Cotillion, Inc. of Pensacola where her daughters Amie and Debbie were presented. She and her family enjoyed activities at both Scenic Hills Country Club and Pensacola Country Club where Mr. Cox held memberships and served on the board, and she enjoyed the designation of being a "Rotary Ann" during the many years, until his death, that Mr. Cox was a member of Suburban West Rotary Club.

Before her marriage, Mrs. Cox rode, showed, and assisted in training Tennessee Walking Horses bred by her father, was a gymnast and cheerleader, newspaper journalist and society writer for the Glomerata and the Plainsman, publications of Alabama Polytechnic Institute.

Mrs. Cox was born in Athens, Ala., the daughter of the late John Hector French, Sr., cattleman, horseman, rancher, farmer, stockyard owner, and descendant of a Continental Army veteran of the American Revolution who was later a founder of Limestone and Madison Counties, and his wife Mary Agnes French, nee Easley, who had removed from Texas where her father, a descendant of colonial era French Huguenots, Continental Army veterans and patriots of the American Revolution, and early founders of the Methodist Episcopal Church in America, had gone, as a boy, with his family in the early 1850's, later wedding the daughter of The Rev. J.H. Rowland, a renowned Baptist minister in east Texas in the 1850's. Mrs. Cox's two beloved brothers, John Hector French, Jr., and Lifford Easley French, predeceased her, as did her dear first cousins, Nicholas Flood (the late Margaret Flood Malone) of Athens, Ala., Bob Sarver (the late Shirley Wallace Sarver) of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and Jody Hays (the late Edward, Sr.) of Marlin, Tex.

Surviving her, are her three daughters, Rebecca Dean Cox and Amie Cox, both of Pensacola, and Debbie Cox Washington Wyatt (Andrew) of Atlanta, Ga.; and grandson, Everett Cox Washington, of Atlanta. Also left to remember and mourn her are her sister-in-law, Frances "Sandy" Cox, nee Sandstrom (the late Donald G.

Cox) of Springfield, Penn.; nieces, Donna French of Athens, Ala., Lynn Cox of Yardley, Pa.; and nephews, John H. French III of Athens, Ala., Donald Gilmer Cox, Jr., and Randal Charles Cox, both of Springfield, Pa.; her cousins, Rebecca Easley Paar (the late Donald, Jr.) of Bremond, Tex., Carolyn Easley Pettey (the late L.B., Jr.) of Bremond, Tex., Frances Broadwater (the late Joe) and Bobby Powell (Reba,) both of Athens, Ala., and the children of the late Frank Powell, Pat and Darla; Andrew Wyatt of Atlanta; Kerry Culligan of Pensacola; and her much-appreciated family of employees of Pensacola Refrigeration Supply, including long-time business manager Mary Brown (the late Tom Brown.)

The family wishes to acknowledge as honorary pallbearers, Mr. Keith L. Bell, Mr. Kerry Culligan, Mr. John H. French III, Mr. Everett Cox Washington, and Mr. Andrew Wyatt, and wants to thank the many personal and business friends and acquaintances who often made inquiries or sent their regards to Mrs. Cox, for which she was very appreciative. Her family and her friends will miss her presence and cherish her memory.

If one wishes to make a memorial donation in the name of Mrs. Cox, the family suggests a cause dear to her heart, the Florida Baptist Children's Home in Pensacola, where it may be used to maintain the Mary Agnes French Memorial Garden for the children. Send donations, including the words, "in memory of Mary Dean French Cox," to Florida Baptist Children's Home; P.O. Box 8190; Lakeland, FL 33802

Visitation will be held from 11:30 a.m. until the funeral service is to begin at 12:00 noon on Saturday, May 3rd, 2014, at Harper-Morris Memorial Chapel, with The Reverend Robert G. "Bobby" Ellisor, pastor of Gadsden Street United Methodist Church, officiating. Interment will follow at Bayview Memorial Park Cemetery. The Cox family's selection of flowers is being prepared by Celebrations Florist 850-433-2022.

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Published in Pensacola News Journal from May 1 to May 3, 2014
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