Hibbett & Hailey Funeral Home

429 Donelson Pike, Nashville, TN


Mary Elizabeth Williams

October 8, 1937March 5, 2020
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Mary E. Williams, of Nashville, TN. died on March 5th, 2020 at Vanderbilt Univ Medical Ctr. She was 82 years of age.

Mary was born on October 8, 1937 in Central City, KY.

In 1973 after moving the family from Indiana to Nashville, she worked at Becker’s Bakery in Donelson and developed a love for cake decorating. In the 70’s, she worked seasonally as a master seamstress for Opryland USA Costume Productions for the Live Entertainment shows. Her most treasured job however was being a devoted wife, loving mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

She is preceded in death by her husband of 42 years, Charles W. Williams; her parents, Calvin Luther and Altha Lena (Wilson) Dukes; brothers, Jimmy and Buddy; sister, Joyce Arriola; and son Carl Malcom Williams. She is survived by sisters; Lee Caswell, Peggy Emmons, and Wanda Beardslee and brother Ronnie Dukes, sons; Mike Williams (Tony) and Mark Williams; daughters Cynthia Pitt, Cheryl Williams, and Connie Williams (Sheila.) (10) Grandchildren; Eric and Ashley Pitt, Autumn and Jennifer Ringelstein, Lauren Williams, Lisa Lane (Wes,) JonMichael Williams (MingJung), Carly Peters (Jameson,) Cassie McEwen (Wade,) and Courtney Williams. (17) Great-grandchildren; Ciara Garrison (Zach,) Brianna, Chazzy, Jacob C., Jordan, Baylie, Bryson, Kaylyn, Jacob A., David, Jessie, Emily, Ella, Cullen, Brennon, Merrick and William; and many beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.

Visitation will be Sunday, March 8, 2020 from 2:00-6:00pm and Monday, March 9, 2020 from 12:00-1:00pm. Funeral will be at Hibbett & Hailey Funeral Home on Monday, March 9, 2020 at 1:00pm. Interment will follow at Hermitage Memorial Gardens.


  • Eric Pitt (Grandson)
  • Chas. Grimes (Great-Grandson)
  • Tim Emmons (Nephew)
  • Kevin Emmons (Nephew)
  • Matthew Stanley (Nephew)
  • Micah Stanley (Great-Nephew)
  • Luke Stanley (Great-Nephew)
  • Ryan Evans (Great-Nephew)
  • Brian Emmons (Nephew), Honorary


  • Visitation Sunday, March 8, 2020
  • Visitation Monday, March 9, 2020
  • Celebration of Life Monday, March 9, 2020


Mary Elizabeth Williams

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March 16, 2020

....Melissa wrapped her up in her favorite blanket and pulled up a side table so that her "EXIT Reality teal blue" yeti cup could sit beside her. Granny, Enzo, Melissa and I sat out there talking and admiring the birds and beautiful weather for about an hour and a half. I watched Granny as she soaked up the sun, and smiled with her eyes closed. She took many deep breaths and sighed. I asked her if she liked that, and she just smiled and shook her head yes. A Cardinal, or as I like to call them, "red birds" showed up on a tree branch just off the back porch. I said, "look Granny, a red bird. You know what they say about red birds, right? They are your loved ones from Heaven coming to visit you and to say hello." She said, "ohh yes." I said, "who do you think that one is? Uncle Carl or Granddaddy?" She said, "that's him". I said, "Uncle Carl?" She said, "yep". A few minutes passed, and she said, "look a red bird". I looked up, and in that same tree there were two red birds!!! I said, "wow, look it's Granddaddy and Uncle Carl. They both came to say hey." Granny smiled so big and giggled. She was so happy! And so was I. Honestly, I was shocked and over joyed in that moment. Now, as I look back at that time on the back porch with Granny, I know she knew her time was coming. She was at peace with everything, even with being "outside". Sometimes you just have to stop and go out side, breathe, soak up the sunshine, and be one with God's masterpiece...and have Faith.

Thank you Granny, for every lesson (even the ones from the paint stick on top of the fridge), every hair do (even the ones that left us in tears with squinty eyes), every hand prepared meal (that fried chicken), every birthday card (especially the sappy ones), every picture (even the "close ups"), every precious moment. Thank you for EVERYTHING! You were our family's ROCK! I miss you terribly! But I know you are with me, ALWAYS!

You will forever be MY red bird!
I love you to the moon and back,


March 16, 2020

Granny was my best friend, my best buddy.

I have way too many stories that I could share. Some sad, some crazy, and a lot of them are funny. And for that, I am forever grateful for the time I got to spend with my precious Granny.

She was ALWAYS present, from my childhood sports, school activities, fundraisers, Grandparents Day, birthday parties, hospital stays, etc. She was there! ALWAYS! I can't even remember a time when, even in my adult life, Granny wasn't there. She cared and loved for her family with everything she had. Family and friends were everything to her, and I guess that's where I get it from.

She instilled many life lessons in me, even in her last days here on Earth. On Tuesday, after the tornadoes hit Nashville, the weather here was perfect. The sun was shinning, slight breeze, birds chirping, and squirrels running around. It was quite eerie, with all the devastation that had occurred the night before. "The calm after the storm". Granny couldn't seem to get comfortable, and kept going from her chair, to her bed. Her sweet nurse Melissa was trying her best to make Granny comfortable, but Granny just kept saying she wanted "out". I came downstairs to talk with Granny and let her know that my office was closed because of the storms and that I would be there with her all day. She looked at me and said, "will you just take me out?" I said, "Take you out? Sure I'll take you out. Where would you like to go?" She said, "out." And pointed towards the back yard. I said, "you want to go outside?!" She said, "well, yea!" Like duh...haha. Now if you know my Granny, you know she doesn't like anything about outside.... Nothing!
So I looked at Melissa (in that confused look) and said, "ok Granny we will go outside." Melissa went and got the wheelchair and we loaded Granny up. When we got outside, I put most of her body in the sun, leaving her head and eyes in the shade..........

Sher Powers

March 16, 2020

One of my favorite memories of Mary was at Connie’s book signing at the marina for “Thinking Consciously Rocks.”
She was so proud, sitting by a window watching everyone line up to get their book signed. I went to her to say hello, and as usual, she complimented and encouraged me. While I know I won’t get her words exactly right after all this time, I do remember what they meant to me.
Mary invited me to sit down and told me, in detail, how I’d impacted Connie and Sheila over the years. Then she surprised me and said that I shared in Connie’s success as an author that day. I didn’t see the correlation and demurred. She persisted.
“Sher,” she smiled. “Don’t you know how we are all connected and everything you do to help someone else on their way becomes part of your own success? You don’t always see it, but it’s always true.”
It took me a decade of leadership training to truly understand what she was saying. Mary understood family, extended family, community, and how lifting up and encouraging and supporting other people was true success, whether measurable or invisible.
By her own measuring stick, Mary was a very successful woman who influenced so many lives in a positive way. I’m grateful to have known her, and grateful for her influence on my own life.

Gabriela Moller-Bell

March 16, 2020

I remember watching Connie teach Mary how to use her brand new scooter. They practiced how to go up a hill and how not to fall over. Once on the street, Mary got a twinkle in her eyes as she looked down at the speed adjuster. I could see the mischief on her face as she looked around at us while switching it from Turtle to Rabbit and took off! It was quite a sight watching Connie run after her yelling, "Mom slow down! " and Mary giggling as she yelled out, "wooohoooo"! She raced down the street delighting in her new found freedom. The way her eyes would light up when she smiled and her laugh are what I will miss the most.

Ciara Garrison

March 15, 2020

When I was in high school I would call Granny on my lunch hour and ask if she was busy. Her response was always, “No do you want me to come pick you up?” She would come get me and we’d spend the rest of what should have been my school day together. We’d go have lunch then spend hours watching movies and laughing together before she’d drop me off at my bus stop just in time for my mom or gran to pick me up. We had this down to a science to keep the two of them from finding out I ditched school. Eventually we did get busted by my 5th period teacher, but for the longest time Granny was my partner in crime.

I would spend my summer breaks with Granny. We’d stay up past midnight watching hallmark movies before falling asleep in the living room. Somehow she always managed to wake up early enough to have breakfast ready and be sitting at the table doing her makeup. I’d sit with her watching her get ready for our day. We’d go to the kitchen and search through her handwritten recipes making a list of ingredients before heading to the store. As we would go through the checkout line, Granny would strike up a conversation with the cashier. She’d always start off the same way saying, “This is my oldest great grandchild, Ciara.” She’d continue to tell the cashier my age and how smart and talented I was. I would always get so embarrassed. Later I would ask her why she would share so many details with a complete stranger. She would always just smile at me and say, “Because you’re so special.” She was always so proud of me and so supportive.

Granny was my biggest cheerleader, my best friend, and my first love. I will miss her so much but I know she’ll always watch over me.

Gina Hendrixson

March 15, 2020

Aunt Mary & my mother, Joyce, were sisters with six other siblings and my father was one of ten children. It was extremely rare for mom or dad's siblings to all be together. There always seemed to be one or two of them missing at family functions. I believe I was with all of my mother's siblings three or four times before one of them passed away.

During one of those times I was able to have my picture taken with all of mom's siblings in the early 1980s & I had my picture taken with my dad & all of his siblings a few years later. It was the first time I had ever seen all ten of them at the same time and I never saw them all together again.

When Aunt Mary went to pick up the pictures of my dad's family, for me, the store didn't have them. They were lost. I was heartsick. Unbeknownst to me Aunt Mary didn't take no for an answer & continued to go to that store demanding they search for the pictures. She brought the pictures to me a few days later. I was so excited, I could hardly breathe! If not for Aunt Mary's persistence I would never have seen those pictures.

Throughout my life, I have felt Aunt Mary's love in countless ways and it is her selfless, devoted and undying love that has guided our family for many years. Words cannot express the hole that is left in our hearts because of her loss and, just as importantly, words cannot express the joy we feel at the memories of her acts of love that will live within us for the remainder of our lives.

Karon Hunt

March 15, 2020

Mary was a wonderful Grandma to Jessica and Katie Hunt, we got so very lucky when she married Carl. She treated us with love and joy every time we saw her.

We are so grateful for her family sharing her with us! We miss you Grandma Mary.♥️♥️

Heather Moody

March 15, 2020

I first met Mary not to long after she suffered her stroke. I was instantly captivated by her spirit that was so formidable and joyous it didn’t matter that at that time she wasn’t able to communicate in words. The trifecta of spirit, that beautiful Williams smile, and……..that skin! I was so mesmerized. Her skin glistened like a fresh snowfall and was as luminous as the brightest star. It was as if the fountain of youth rested squarely with Mary. So, instantly I started to refer to her as “Peaches and Cream.” I think she liked it as she would smile and give an “aw shucks” type of response. I imagine when she walked through those pearly gates that Jesus added a little something to his greeting..”well done my good and faithful and servant, your mind has been restored, your body made new, but girl that skin of yours I can’t make look any younger!” I will miss you, Peaches and Cream. All my love - Heather

Connie Hall

March 14, 2020

I always remember Mary's smile. So beautiful. I also enjoyed crashing on BHC and going downstairs to see Mary and talking to her. Such a sweet and true lady💕. You will be missed.

Breanna Bell

March 14, 2020

I lived accross the street from Mary for 5+yrs and have known her family for the past 20. All these years I've watched as her family circled her in love and devotion. Watched Mary's joy in being playful and silly with her family on Facebook. Laughed with her when she raced up our street on her new electric wheelchair joining her for a wild, wavy ride. Knew her as a spirit filled with love, joy and, most of all with family. She will be missed but, despite the loss, this joy and connection , always remembered and present.

*and Mary, eats lots of crablegs up there for me.