Mary Nash Kuder
June 27, 1931 – July 16, 2018
Mary Nash Kuder passed away in Tampa, Florida on July 16, 2018 at age 87.
She married Jack A. Kuder on June 25, 1955 in St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Winter Haven, FL. They were married until his death in 2011. She is survived by her son John Kuder, daughter-in-law Constance Kuder, grandsons Joshua Kuder and Matthew Kuder, two great-grandsons, and nieces Gay Snively Descalso and Stella Snively Dingle.
Mary graduated from the Baldwin School in Bryn Mawr, PA and earned her BS degree in Mathematics from Vassar College, where she was also chosen for the Daisy Chain as a sophomore.
She loved animals, particularly horses and dogs, and was a generous supporter of the Humane Society. She spoiled at least one dog for over 60 of her years and was involved with horses as a child, again sharing her love with her son as a young mother, and later as a thoroughbred owner. Mary and her friend Ruth drove to Tampa Bay Downs at least twice a week during racing season. Her grandsons fondly remember cheering the horses and eating through the menu between races.
Mary’s many interests included music, Red Sox baseball, shelling at Sanibel and Little Gasparilla Island, growing orchids and roses, playing bridge, needlepoint, photography, water color painting, travel, cooking, and genealogy. None of them were casual or passing interests. She was committed.
Mary had box seats on the first base line for Red Sox spring training at Chain of Lakes Stadium for most of the years the Sox came. She generously shared these seats with friends and family. She learned to keep box scores during grade school at Inwood Elementary and used this skill at every spring training game. Mary was an avid Ted Williams fan; one of her prized possessions was a baseball that the legendary player signed twice, over 40 years apart.
Mary loved words and language; catchy phrases and famous quotes in several languages often came out of her mouth. She was a big reader with two walls of bookshelves, filled with everything from the classics to hundreds of skillfully-used cookbooks. She always had a library book or two next to her chair and she did the crossword puzzle every day. Mary also had an encyclopedic knowledge of song lyrics from the 1940’s and 1950’s and Christmas carols.
Christmas was her favorite holiday by far and her eggnog recipe was legend among those who attended her Christmas parties.
Walking a beach bent over in search of shells was her happy place. Anyone who knew what an “operculum” is was immediately more trustworthy, because they shared her knowledge of shells. Shell art decorated her home, along with many pieces of needlepoint and other artistic creations she drew, painted, or made.
She was very proud of her Irish heritage and all of Mary’s close friends and family were jokingly threatened with a whack from her (father’s) shillelagh when they teased her. This was probably a weekly occurrence at the bridge games with her dear friends, which could get quite rowdy.
She and Jack traveled the world together, including her beloved Ireland, and returned with art from every place they went.
Her genealogy studies led to membership in both the Daughters of the American Revolution. and the Colonial Dames.
Most of all, Mary was devoted to her family. She especially loved her grandsons and attended every school and sports event they had. She also came to love their chosen mates and her great grandsons as they entered her world.
Final arrangements are being made by Ott-Laughlin Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, the family requests a donation to one of the following: Humane Society, Hospice, Parkinson’s Foundation, Alzheimer’s Family Association, Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance, or a charity of your choice.