Sparkman/Hillcrest Funeral Home & Hillcrest Mausoleum & Memorial Park
7405 West Northwest Highway, Dallas, TX
Mary Shelton Florence
June 25, 1923 – November 2, 2019
Mary Shelton Florence died peacefully Saturday, November 2, 2019 at home surrounded by her family and devoted caregivers. With great determination and courage, she fought the good fight. Her life was and still is a testimony of her Christian faith and belief.
Mary Catherine's remarkable life of 96 years began in Archer City, Texas. She graduated from Baylor University where she worked for Dr. Armstrong in the Armstrong-Browning Library and earned a Masters of Arts at Southern Methodist University. She married Edward Florence Jr. in 1943, and they had three children. Mary began teaching in 1957 and in 1960 was appointed as one of the first women DISD principals. She influenced many young lives and teachers during her career before retiring in 1983.
Her devotion to her husband, children, and family was a key priority, and she reflected God's love and grace to everyone throughout her life. During her life, she was very active in her church, a charter member and Regent of the General Levi Casey chapter of the DAR, a founding member of the Eta Zeta chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma, and a long time Dallas Symphony Stradivarius Patron as well as active in the SMU Godbey Lecture Series and the Tate Lectures.
Mary still lived life to the fullest even after the onset of dementia fifteen years ago. Her devoted caregivers took her out every day to NorthPark Center and Caruth Park where she enjoyed beautiful flowers and watching the children play. While dementia robbed her of many things, Mary still lived life with grace and a loving spirit.
We, her family, greatly appreciate the love and compassion she received from her long-term caregivers, Angelica, Maria, and Delores; and the long support from her housekeeper, Felicia, and hair stylist, Sue. Mary was predeceased by her husband, Edward Florence Jr. and her daughter, Mary Gene Florence Ness. She is survived by her sons Edward Florence III, and Joseph Florence and wife Tina. She is also survived by son-in-law Norman Ness Jr, grandchildren Norman Ness III, Meredith Appelt, Matthew Florence, Joshua Florence, Zachary Florence, Nick Florence, and Luke Florence, and fifteen great grandchildren.
Her funeral service will be held at Cox Chapel at Highland Park United Methodist Church on Wednesday, November 13, 2019 at 1:00 PM. Family will receive friends immediately after the service. Highland Park United Methodist Church address is 3300 Mockingbird Lane, Dallas TX 75205. The graveside service will follow at Hillcrest Memorial Park, 7405 West Northwest Highway, Dallas, TX.
Memorials can be made to Highland Park United Methodist Church Journey Memory Program.
- Funeral Service Wednesday, November 13, 2019
- Committal Service Wednesday, November 13, 2019