Mary Elizabeth Thomas Walton, born in Florida, was the second child of Albert Sr. and Elizabeth (Dixon) Thomas. Survived by sister, Ethel Samuels. Preceded in death by brothers, Albert Jr. and William Thomas, Roosevelt Jr., Michael, Stephen and Eric Watkins.
She was a graduate of Roosevelt High School. At an early age Mary’s spiritual interest was piqued upon noticing a weekly Bible study group meeting in the neighborhood. She asked her Mother’s permission to attend but circumstances prevented it. As a young wife and mother she was invited by a relative to hear the Bible discussed at an assembly. Approaching one of the speakers afterward she asked, “How many times did you say God’s name is in the Bible?” (Psalm 83:18) Soon a knock on the door led to the path from which Mom never deviated: She found the truth! A prayerful dedication led to baptism in 1957 as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, along with Ethel. To our delight Deuteronomy 6:7 guided these sisters’ steps in training their 11 children. A highlight was attending the 1958 International Assembly of Jehovah’s Witnesses in New York City.
Mommy carved out a life of many triumphs and persevered through the tragedies. Her endurance was blessed on countless occasions! Proverbs 15:15 and James 1:2 - 4 were her anchors, as well as countless other verses humbly shared with numerous individuals over the decades who, to this day, relate those conversations with a smile. Her children fondly recall reciting Psalm 133:1 whenever they squabbled; even if they had to repeat it 5 times for the lesson to sink in!
Caring for her younger siblings as a teenager fostered her love of children to grow. As a child she wanted to help the orphans of Shawen Acres ( known now as Montgomery County Children’s Services). As an adult she was hired there, and retired in 2004.
Recent recollections of Mary: “Jehovah takes care of those who are obedient, love and trust him. Darling did that as soon as she got to know him. I am thankful she shared her faith with me.” + “When the kids were little our daughter wanted to adopt her.” + “Aunt Mary would take your breath away with her ability to see the good in people and in situations.” + “I love the fact that people literally light up relating a personal Mary Walton or Darling story. And she made Jehovah so real to us grandkids at such a young age.” How did the nickname “Darling” come about? Well, Mom called her granddaughter that; so when she began talking, “Darling” popped right out! Her caregivers were uplifted by that megawatt smile, stating: “She gave this job meaning for me;” lastly, “You are a big blessing. I love taking care of you.”
Mom’s legacy: Love of reading, deep Bible research, a positive characteristic, spirit of gratitude, contentment, train travel, and even mastering the electric slide on her walker will be honored by children + spouses from her marriage to Harry Walton, Jr.: Terri & David DePriest, Harry III & Mona Walton, Kathy and Thomas Wood, Christopher Walton (Camillia, deceased); 14 grandchildren, 15 great-grandchildren; adoring sisters-in-law, Betty Holly, Helen McCain, Carole Thomas + other cherished relatives; friends for life, Lois Butcher and Jessie Grace, (deceased: The Ed & Shirley Caldwell, Bob & Bunny Henderson, Billy & Patty Shavers, mother-in-law, Margaret Walton, Uncle George and Aunt Mattie); along with other treasured friends + hugging buddies; daughters of distinction, Penny Black, Viola Cotton, Alice Watts; spiritual son, Larry Neely. Wood Glen Alzheimer’s Community was her final home and their devoted nurturing soothed our hearts.
Declaring her unwavering faith in Jesus’ invitation to “Come out!” of the memorial tombs (John 11:43) Sister “Wonderful”, as she was sometimes called, will be welcomed back with rejoicing! Jw.org
Sunday, November 1, 2020 @ 6 p.m. EST Zoom Memorial Service: ID 889 0952 0849 Passcode: 263263
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