BURLINGTON - Mrs. Mary Elizabeth Gatewood Neal, 103, formerly of Aycock Avenue, Burlington, died at the Village at Brookwood on Tuesday, March 19, 2013 at 8 a.m.
A native of Caswell County, she was the wife of the late Thomas Stephen Neal Jr. and the daughter of Alvis Stokes Gatewood Sr. and Mary Glass Gatewood, both deceased. She attended Elon College for one year and then transferred to UNC-Greensboro. She was a former school teacher
and was an officer of Graham Hosiery Mills Inc.
Mrs. Neal was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Burlington where she was a lifetime honorary member of the Women of the Church. She was involved in many clubs and organizations including the Alamance Country Club Women's Golf Association, Alamance County Service League, and was a lifetime supporter with her husband of the Burlington Kiwanis Club. In addition, she was a member of the Garden Club and being an avid reader she was a member of various book clubs. She loved to play golf, bridge, and loved traveling with her husband.
Survivors include one son, Thomas Stokes Neal and wife Anne Marie of Burlington; 10 grandchildren, Lisa Rueh and husband Marty, Cord Finley and wife Naomi, Stephen Edwards and wife Liz, Phillip Edwards and wife Suzee, Claire Purdy and husband Scott, Katherine Edwards, Brandy Clapp, Mary Katherine Smith and husband Allen, Julie Brow and husband Greg, and Ashley Dunn and husband Kevin; 20 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. A special love is shown to Volker Langbein, a German exchange student who came to live with Mrs. Neal and her husband and became like a second son to them and has kept in touch over the years.
She was predeceased by two daughters, Betty Neal Edwards and surviving husband Ellison and Nancy Neal Rivers and surviving husband John; two brothers Cary Iverson Gatewood and Alvis Stokes Gatewood Jr.; and one grandson, Robert Stephen Neal.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Friday, March 22, 2013 at the First Presbyterian Church of Burlington. Dr. Ron L. Shive and the Rev. Kathryn Lee will be officiating. Prior to the memorial service, there will be a committal service at 1:10 p.m. at Alamance Memorial Park.
A celebration will be held at the church immediately following the service and at other times the family will be at the residence of the son, 503 Oakland Drive, Burlington.
Memorials may be made to the First Presbyterian Church of Burlington Music Fund, 508 W. Davis Street, Burlington, NC 27215.
The family would like to give a special thanks to caregivers Catherine Thompson and Viola Corbett and also the nurses and CNAs of the Village of Brookwood, 3rd Floor Windsor Terrace.
Rich and Thompson Funeral and Cremation Service in Burlington is in charge of the arrangements.
Condolences may be made at www.richandthompson.com