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Meech, Mary Henderson Pitts

The Newton Kansan

Mary Henderson Pitts Meech

(1927 - 2020)


An obituary notice from the W.C. Henderson extended family:

Mary Henderson Pitts Meech, 92, passed away on Jan. 21, 2020, in Medford, Oregon. She was born as Mary Inez Henderson on Sept. 30, 1927, to W.C. and Naomi Henderson in Newton. Mary attended local Newton schools and graduated from Newton High in 1945.

While in high school, Mary served as a nurse's aide and Cadet Nurse at Axtell Hospital. She attended Ottawa University in Ottawa, where she met Jim Pitts. In 1948, they were married in Newton. They had two children, Jana and Chuck. The family lived in Kansas, Wyoming, North Dakota and Colorado. During her marriage with Jim, Mary received her LPN, RN and Associate's Degree in Nursing. She also earned a BS Degree in Psychology from St. Joseph's College in Maine.

In their 45 years of marriage, Mary and Jim enjoyed cooking, gardening, bridge, hiking and camping. They especially enjoyed national and international travel. Her love of nursing spanned from high school in Newton to retirement in Denver, with ever increasing credentials. As an excellent seamstress, Mary had a wedding gown business, Meri in the Moor. After retirement, Mary began watercolor and acrylic painting, a love and talent that continued throughout her life. In 1994, Jim died from cancer.

Mary was wed to Fred Meech and lived in San Jose, California, from 1995 to 2011. Mary and Fred enjoyed international travel, local cultural events and ballroom dancing. Mary was active in choir and readers theater. She displayed her paintings in art exhibits. After Fred's death in 2011 from Parkinson's, Mary moved to Twin Creeks, an independent retirement community in Central Point, Oregon, to be near her daughter. In Oregon, Mary continued to travel locally. She was the founder and director of a readers theater group, entitled Seniors Acting Out, and was active in both writers and painting groups.

Of Mary's many lifetime accomplishments, the one that stands out from all the others is her love of family and friends. This is reflected in the outpouring of affection for her through visits, phone calls and emails during her three weeks in hospice following her sudden, massive stroke. Many family members and friends, both locally and nationally, made contact with her. She is clearly loved by a multitude of people as a beloved friend, aunt and mother.

A quote by Ralph H. Plum speaks to her peaceful mind while in hospice:

There is a calmness

to a life lived in gratitude,

a quiet joy.

Mary was preceded in death by her parents, Cal and Naomi Henderson; brother, Hosea Henderson; sisters, Florence Schupbach, Martha Hull and Ruth Henness; son, Chuck Pitts; two husbands, Jim Pitts and Fred Meech; and great-nephews, Peter Whitaker and Joshua Henness.

Mary is survived by her daughter, Jana Rae of Medford, Oregon; numerous nieces, nephews and their children; cousins Lola Schmidt, Helen Bertrand and Maurine Regehr of North Newton, Velma Hadley of Hillsboro, and Leland Voth of Virginia.

A memorial and interment will be held at 3 p.m. March 21, 2020, at Olinger Crown Hill Cemetery in Wheat Ridge, Colorado.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Celia's House, a lovely hospice facility in Medford, Oregon.

Owner/SourceHarvey County Genealogical Society
Date29 Feb 2020
Linked toMary Inez (Henderson) Pitts Meech

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