Mary Gordon Leith Rutrough, beloved wife of the late Rev. Billy Fisher Rutrough passed away Sunday, April 23, 2023 in Dublin, Georgia. She was 92.
Born in Madison, Wisconsin to Kenneth Leith and Miriam Arey Leith, she had one brother Kenneth Leith who preceded her in death. In her early life, Mary’s family relocated to Amherst, Virginia, where she grew up reading books and climbing trees as a young girl. Mary graduated from the National Cathedral School, Washington D.C., in 1948, and Sweetbriar College, Amherst, Virginia in 1952 with a Bachelors of Art degree in music. She worked for G. Schirmer, Inc. in New York City and later with the U.S. Army ORO in Heidelberg, Germany.
Mary married Bill in 1958 and shared over 50 years of blessed life together. Mary assisted him in his ministry at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Knoxville, Tennessee until 1965 and Christus Victor Lutheran Church in Ocean Springs, Mississippi until his retirement in 1991. She sang in the choir, was active in the Lutheran Church Women, and served on the Board of Directors for the Williams Henson Lutheran Home for Children. While in Ocean Springs, Mary belonged to the Southern Pines Garden Club and the Women’s Auxiliary Guild.
Mary spent her life giving back to her community and helping others, believing particularly in the importance of higher education. She was an avid needlepoint, cross-stitch and embroidery artist and loved reading, especially murder mysteries and current events. Spicy, sweet and extremely funny described her well.
Mary also loved to travel with her family. She traveled throughout Europe, Russia, England, New Zealand, South Africa and Italy. She frequented many music festivals throughout the Southeast and regularly attended Garth Newel Music Center in Virginia.
After Bill’s death in 2009, Mary made a new life for herself at Hope Lutheran Church in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida. When the time came to be closer to family, she easily made the move to Dublin, Georgia where she became very active at Henry Memorial Presbyterian Church.
Mary dedicated her life to her family: always with love, compassion and wisdom.
Mary is survived by her children Becky Kearns of Dallas, Texas, Andy (Thyne) Rutrough of La Grange, Kentucky, and Elizabeth (Robert) Couey of Dublin, Georgia; and grandchildren Abby Rutrough, Isaac Rutrough, Micah Rutrough and Austin Couey. She is also survived by her three beloved nieces and a nephew, Mary Charlotte Parish of College Station, Texas, Ann Marie (Ken) Griess of Montgomery, Texas, Francie (Rob) Hensz of College Station, Texas, and Kenneth Leith of San Antonio, Texas, as well as several great and great-great nieces and nephews.
A celebration of life service will be held at a later date at Henry Memorial Presbyterian Church in Dublin, Georgia. Arrangements will be made by Townsend Brothers Funeral Home. Internment will be at Evergreen Burial Park with her husband in Roanoke, Virginia.
In lieu of flowers, Mary requested that donations be made to Henry Memorial Presbyterian Church (511 Bellevue Ave., Dublin, GA 31021), Christus Victor Lutheran Church (2755 Bienville Blvd., Ocean Springs, Mississippi 39564) or Agape Hospice (hpcfoundation.org).
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