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Schwantes, Mary V

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June 23, 1921 - April 6, 2015

Schwantes, Mary V

                                             Schwantes 

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Mary Veatrice Schwantes was born June 23, 1921 in York, Ala., the eldest of eight children of Ernest W. and Viola Stokes.  She died April 6, 2015 in Porter, Tex., surviving her parents and all siblings until her death at age 93.

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Mary was a member of the “Greatest Generation,” having grown up in rural Alabama during the depths of the 1930s Depression, then tending the Home Front throughout World War II.  She met Walter J. Schwantes Jr. at a community social event in Birmingham, and they later married on April 13, 1941.  Two years later, the first of their three children, Leonard, was born while Walter was deployed as a U.S. Navy officer in Pacific wartime campaigns.  Mary was widowed on April 23, 2005.

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In addition to Leonard and his wife Sue Ann Davis Schwantes, Mary is survived by daughter Louise Schwantes Sawyer and her husband Stephen, and a son, Ronald Schwantes.  Also surviving Mary are two stepsons of Leonard, David and John Elam.  She leaves two grandchildren as well, Karen Sawyer Grabow and Robert Sawyer; their spouses Robby Grabow and Christin Scroggins Sawyer, respectively, and two great-granddaughters, Rachel and Heidi Grabow.

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Like many of the devout of her generation, Mary’s journey through life followed the Lordship of Jesus Christ.  She believed in faith, fidelity and family, and held firmly to the principles of a stable home life, a respect for others and provision for her loved ones.  These she expressed in many ways, from the ample preparation of nourishing meals to the economics of running a busy household.

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Mary and Walter first resided in Birmingham following his return from the war, then moved to Austin, Tex. and ultimately to Houston.  They settled in Kingwood in 1979 and soon joined Kingwood First Baptist Church.  Mary worked at the University of Texas Medical School Dental Branch in the 1970s and early ‘80s.  She became a favorite of dental students there, always sharing a smile and words of encouragement.

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As the eldest of her siblings and the first among them to establish her own family, Mary in later years was often considered their confidante` and mentor.  She had a special gift for sensing the needs of others, always offering a heartfelt response.  She understood grief, pain and want, but drew strength from her faith and life experiences.

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God’s grace showered Mary with personal gifts of hope, optimism and love.  She demonstrated her devotion to her husband Walter throughout their 64 years of marriage, to her friends and neighbors, and indeed to the next three generations of family she leaves behind.

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To view and submit images or to sign the guestbook, visit http://www.mem.com/6393316


Service Information

Visitation: A visitation was held on 2015-04-13 at Darst Funeral Home.


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