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Mary Helen Lee Langford

1922 - 2013 Obituary Condolences
Mary Helen Lee Langford

Mary Helen Lee Langford, 91, died Tuesday March 19, 2013 of natural causes in Tallahassee, Florida.

Mary was born on May 11, 1922 in Beverly, New Jersey. She was one of two children of Helen Marie Denniston Lee and Albert Everett Lee. As a young girl Mary enjoyed music lessons, trips to the Jersey shore, and watching horse-racing with her father. Mary was the 1939 Valedictorian of Moorestown High School and while in high school was the editor-in-chief of the newspaper, magazine, and yearbook, played cello and she was on the swim team. During the summers Mary was a camp counselor at Camp Matollionequay teaching swimming and outdoors skills. Mary attended Wilson College in Chambersburg, PA on a full scholarship graduating magna cum laude with a 3.6 GPA with a Bachelor of Arts in English, minor in Latin, in 1943; she enjoyed playing the cello in the college orchestra in addition to her studies. After graduation Mary became an English teacher. While teaching in Baltimore, MD, she met her soon to be husband Robert, and enjoyed a war-time elopement on Tuesday, October 24th, 1944, in a New Orleans, LA, Navy chapel. After WWII ended, the young couple moved to Gainesville, FL and her husband attended the University of Florida on the GI bill and their first child was born in 1947. Three more children would follow through the fifties and early sixties. Mary was an English teacher for 42 years in Dade, Broward and Leon counties and retired from Nims Middle School in 1984.

Mary was a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, and enjoyed her membership in the Women of the Church and Stephen Ministry through Faith Presbyterian Church where she was a member for over 40 years. Mary's Denniston family line emigrated from Scotland in the late 1600's and her family were Presbyterians in an unbroken line since that time. Mary is a direct descendent of George Clinton, second Vice-President of the United States under Thomas Jefferson, and first Governor of New York.

She enjoyed traveling in her retirement years and traveled frequently including trips to Europe, the near East, and to visit her oldest child in China. She was an avid bridge player and gardener. Mary was active in her grandchildren's lives helping cater to and tutor the many youngsters.

Mary is predeceased by her husband Robert Franklin Langford in 1998 after 54 years of marriage and brother Albert Everett Lee, Jr. in 2005.

She is lovingly survived by Carol Langford Pennington (Jerry) of Columbus, Indiana, Robert F. Langford Jr. of Tallahassee, FL, Richard F. Langford (Susan) of East Point, FL and Marilyn Langford Davis (Cliff) of Johns Creek, GA, 14 grandchildren, and 7 great grandchildren. A memorial service is scheduled for Monday, March 25th, in the Fellowship Hall at Faith Pres. Church at 3 pm. Donations in lieu of flowers may be made in Mary's memory to Faith Presbyterian Church.

Published in Tallahassee Democrat from Mar. 22 to Mar. 24, 2013
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