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HUGHES MARY MANDIS HUGHES Died peacefully on Wednesday, May 28, 2014. She was 95. Born in Washington, DC, Mary was the daughter of Demetra and Harry Mandis. Her brothers John and Steve along with her sisters, Carrie, Betsy, Vivian and Eva formed a tight knit family after the early death of their father. Mary was the oldest of the seven children and at age 12 became her mother's confidant and source of strength. Mary was a woman ahead of her time. She was most accomplished and managed to navigate all the successes and challenges of life with grace and humility. She put herself through law school during the depression graduating from Columbus University with a law degree. In the 1940's she worked for the War Assets Administration, the Bureau of the Census, the War Department and finally landed a legal position with the United States Justice Department. It was 1950 when she became a Special Naturalization Examiner and then the Assistant United States Attorney for the Territory of Guam. While in Guam she was instrumental in developing the documents that permitted Guam to become a U.S. territory. Mary returned to the States in 1952. She worked as an attorney for the Land and Natural Resources Division of the Justice Department for over 20 years. She received special commendation awards for outstand- ing service rendered while in the Land Division. The highlight of her service was an invitation from President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy to attend a dinner honoring her at the White House. She married her husband, Thomas A. Hughes in 1959. They had a beautiful and exciting life together. When Tom died, Mary decided to retire from the Justice Department. She was a curious and informed person all of her life. She became a world traveler visiting most of Western Europe, Great Britain, and parts of Central America. She was most proud of her service to the National Red Cross where she served as a volunteer at the United States Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. Mary was admired by many, but by none more than her family, whom she loved and valued above all. She shared her deepest self and made life interesting and important. She was her family's best friend and most valuable teacher. Her family was inspired by her, grateful for her love and humbled by her accomplishments. She leaves behind her sister, Eva; sister-in-law, Rachel; nieces, nephews, great and great-great nieces and nephews. Friends may gather at the Saint George Greek Orthodox Church, 7701 Bradley Boulevard, Bethesda, Maryland at 11 a.m. on Thursday, June 5 for a service in her honor. Interment will be at Fort Lincoln Cemetery immediately following the church service.Friends may gather at the Saint George Greek Orthodox Church, 7701 Bradley Boulevard, Bethesda, Maryland at 11 a.m. on Thursday, June 5 for a service in her honor. Interment will be at Fort Lincoln Cemetery immediately following the church service.
Published in The Washington Post on June 4, 2014