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Mary Frances Airhart

    A celebration of the life of Mary Frances Airhart, 87, of Lamesa, Texas, will be held on April 6, 2024,1:00 p.m., at North 14th Street Church of Christ in Lamesa with Minister Mark Hackett officiating. A reception and time of sharing for friends and family will follow at the same location.
    Mary Frances Forehand was born on April 15, 1936, in Sundown, Texas, to Artie Sr. and Jessie (Holt) Forehand. Mary wed James Edward Airhart, Jr. of Sparenberg on June 28, 1957, in Lubbock, Texas. They celebrated 59 great years together until Jimmy’s death on August 5, 2016.
    Mary influenced many throughout her varied career as an educator. From 1966 through the summer of 1981, Mary was a valued teacher for Klondike ISD. In 1981 she took the position of co-op counselor for Klondike ISD, Sands CISD and Dawson ISD. In 1998, Mary took a counseling position which she held until her retirement in 2005. In all, Mary accumulated 39 years of service in public education and left a lasting impression on many lives. Her degrees included BS in Education, Master’s in English, and Master’s in Counseling. She also held certifications in library science, driver’s ed, physical ed, special ed and ESL.
    In addition to her service in the classroom, Mary freely helped coach many girls’ basketball teams from the bench, the score table as well as from the bleachers. Although Mary received various awards and recognition during her lifetime, she was most proud of being recognized as “Klondike’s #1 Fan”. Mary shared her knowledge of sports from her experience as an athlete….she played tennis, volleyball, and basketball at Howard Co Jr. College while maintaining a perfect 4.0 GPA. Later, Mary played for years with some of her closest friends on the outsiders’ volleyball team, SPARS. She truly enjoyed everyone she played with as well as many of her opponents.
    Along with sports and teaching, Mary loved Jesus and was a faithful servant of the Lord. As a long-time member of North 14th Street Church of Christ, she taught various classes and especially loved being part of VBS. Mary was a proud member of the church’s “Sewing Sisters” group that created many beautiful handmade quilts.
    Known as “Mother” and “Nanny” to those who loved her most, Mary is survived by her children: Teri Jones and husband Sam of Leonard, Texas; Tracey Harris and husband Brian of Lamesa, Texas; Tanya Harley and husband Jerry of New Home, Texas; Todd Airhart and wife Sonnya of Frisco, Texas; sister, Jean Dunlap of Levelland, Texas; brother, Steve Forehand and wife Linda of Bentonville, Arkansas; brother, Artie Forehand and wife, Margie of Marlow, Oklahoma. Mary left a lasting impression on 12 wonderful grandchildren and 34 amazing great-grandchildren whom she treasured and adored. She was preceded in death by her husband, Jimmy; her parents, Artie Sr. and Jessie Forehand; siblings, Joyce, Charles, Gloria, Hugh, James; great-grandson, Luke Airhart.
    Mary was an avid reader and puzzle solver. In her honor and in lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to the Dawson County Library or the Dawson County Senior Center.
    To send condolences online, please visit Funeral arrangements were trusted to Branon Funeral Home, 403 N. Austin Ave Lamesa, TX 79331, (806) 872-8335.

– Press-Reporter obituary services

Lamesa Press-Reporter

P.O. Box 710
Lamesa, TX 79331