Mary C. Cobb Callahan

November 18, 1925September 28, 2013

Mary Cobb Callahan was a wife, mother, advertising executive, educator, dog lover, and friend to many. Mary Callahan, formerly Mary Bugg, nee Mary Louise Cobb, was born in Temple, Georgia. She was the daughter of Loyal McColister and Paul Cobb, Sr. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism from the Henry W. Grady School of Journalism at the University of Georgia, attending classes at the Atlanta Campus (later Georgia State University), where she edited The Signal. She began her first career as a photojournalist on the staff of Southern Bell Telephone News, the in-house employee magazine, where she later became editor. While working for Southern Bell, she entered and won a 1953 Glamour magazine contest, “Ten Girls with Taste.” Another winner that same year was Helen Gurley Brown. While at Southern Bell she met her first husband, Owen Bugg, a freelance commercial draftsman. They were married in 1956. In 1959, Mary authored a novel, Top Dog, which takes place over a “dog show weekend” set in Atlanta. She wrote much of the novel on typewriter carried on a breadboard in her lap as Owen drove them both to work each day. In the early 1960’s, she became an advertising account executive with BDA-BBDO, managing accounts for several State agencies including Stone Mountain Park and the State Farmer’s Market. She was the radio voice of “Mary Mar-ket,” the Market’s personality. After many successful years in the advertising business, she began her next career, taking the helm of Emory University’s Community Educational Services, where she firmly established the “Evening at Emory” brand. In that role, she also hosted a television program under various titles, including Today at Emory, Medicine at Emory, and Emory Today. While working full-time she completed a Master of Arts in Education, also at Emory. The Georgia Adult Education Association named her its 1998–99 Outstanding Adult Educator. She also helped found the Emory Senior University program, which she later ran after retiring as Director of Evening at Emory. Her husband Owen passed away in 1991. She wed her second husband, Edward Callahan in 1996, who was an instructor at the Senior University. Their marriage lasted until Ed’s passing in 2009. Mary fully retired in 2009, but continued to host her annual Holiday party at her Decatur home. Throughout her life, Mary loved to travel, especially to London and Hong Kong. She also collected antiques and was a member of the Decatur Rotary Club. Mary Callahan is survived by her brother and sister-in-law; a nephew and his wife, a great-niece; two sons, two daughters-in-law, two granddaughters, and two devoted caretakers. The family will receive friends on Wednesday, October 2, 2013, from 6 until 8 o’clock at H. M. Patterson & Son, Spring Hill, 1020 Spring Street, NW, Atlanta, Georgia, 30309. A funeral service is scheduled for Thursday, October 3, 2013 at 10 o’clock at Holy Trinity Parish, 515 E. Ponce De Leon Ave., Decatur, Georgia, 30030. A brief reception will follow the service at the church. A private interment will held later. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations made in her memory to either Holy Trinity Parish at or the Cathedral of St. Philip in Atlanta at


  • Visitation Wednesday, October 2, 2013
  • Funeral Service Thursday, October 3, 2013

Mary C. Cobb Callahan

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irene rev.21:4,5

October 27, 2013

May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.

October 14, 2013

A wonderful person, fellow-traveler, and bon vivant, Mary brought a lot of happiness into my life, as she did into the lives of others. Our tours of Paris and London and Hong Kong (among others) were made delightful by her gift of enjoying life no matter where we were. I was happy to be along when she and Ed celebrated their "honeymoon" on a tour of Paris. Her open-house Christmas celebrations were memorable. Although my health did not permit my attendance at the celebration of her life, I thought of her then and still think of her now, celebrating her long and full life. Joyce Pair

Mal. 3:16 ~ Kim

October 4, 2013

As the days and weeks pass, and as you return to life's routine, may you continue to feel comforted by the love and support of family and friends.


October 3, 2013

May " the God of all comfort" give your family the comfort all of you need to endure the sadness and pain death has left behind in its path.

Martha Ann Stegar

October 3, 2013

A beloved and unique person has gone from this earth, and there will never be anyone who can fill her shoes. She was a delightful friend to me, and I will always remember our adventures together on Evening at Emory trips abroad. What others have written about her creativity, innovation, and zest for life are all SO true! She came up with the most interesting, unusual, and forward-looking courses for Senior University, and always greeted her "students" with sparkle and sincere interest in each one. Each year, I eagerly looked forward to her Christmas open houses, where she gathered together the most interesting people in Atlanta. My deepest sympathy to you, her family--sons, daughters-in-law, and those precious girls. You are her legacy.

October 3, 2013

Mary 's contributions were many and important. It seemed as though she never stopped working and learning. We were honored to know her and to be included in her annual holiday party. Our deep sympathy for all her family.
Barbara and Elliott Levitas

Lisa Sperling

October 3, 2013

Mary was my boss all through college when I worked at Evening at Emory. She was such an original and quite an inspiration to a young woman finding her way. I can still here her voice saying "Little girl, come here and tell me what you think of this news article." She always brought out the best in people and I, for one, feel blessed to have known her.

Steve Stoffle

October 2, 2013

Mary was my boss, my mentor, and my friend. I learned so much from her and her memory continues to inspire me to take chances, and live with gusto. She made Evening at Emory into a model program across the country. . .there will never be another like her!

Mary Shepherd

October 2, 2013

Mary's Christmas Parties were legend, and I never missed one. I was priveleged to be married in her home many, many years ago. I considered her a good friend and confidant.

October 2, 2013