By Thomas Sellers Jr.
A woman who devoted so much time of her life to family, friends, colleagues and educating children, two hours wasn’t enough to honor her memory.
Friday from 4 to 6 p.m., the Jones family hosted hundreds of people coming to play tribute to the late Mary Elizabeth Jones. The First Lady of Millington passed away Tuesday morning on August 31 after a courageous battle with lung cancer.
Her husband Mayor Terry Jones and their children stood alongside Mary’s siblings accepting condolences and sharing stories about her. In recent years, Mary’s career in education took her to the former Millington Elementary School.
From Principal Kathy Wilson to Melbra Tross, several from Mary’s professional family came to the memorial service.
“She had a heart for the kids,” colleague Shonda Lott said. “Math was her subject. She loved teaching math. She loved to volunteer. She did all the data and did an awesome job at it. She broke it down so we could all understand.”
Another to share the hallways with Mary was Sharon Harris. From all the Read Across America events to the field days, Harris said Jones simply enjoyed being around children.
“No matter what, she was willing to help,” Harris said. “Whatever you asked her to do or needed her to do she did it with a smile. She loved the children. Her heart was into education.”
Jones’ heart was into supporting her husband when he entered politics as alderman and later mayor of Millington. Mary also cheered on her children as they chased their interests and dreams.
Mary Elizabeth Jones was born October 24, 1966 and grew up to earn degrees from Arkansas State University and Hendrix College.
She is survived by her husband Terry. Throughout her battle with cancer, Terry was loving and devoted with his prayers, time, support and understanding all the things his wife provided for the family.
He was by her side when she passed peacefully in her sleep at 4:50 in the morning.
Mary also leaves behind her four children, Ashlyn Jones, Karrah Van Horn and husband Alex, Tyler Jones, Trevor Jones. She is also survived by her two stepchildren, Whitney Cash and husband Mark, Deuce Jones and wife Sarah; grandchildren Mason Van Horn, Ainsley Cash, Rowan Cash, Harper Cash; three brothers, Bobby Farrah and wife Traci, Scott Farrah and wife Sara, Patrick Farrah and wife Bonnie and their families, as well as many beloved friend and extended family members.
Mary was preceded in death by her parents Bobby and Nora Farrah.
“She was loved dearly and will be missed greatly by so many- especially the children whose lives she poured into at church and the schools,” Terry said. “She truly had a servant’s heart and put others above herself always. Mary was a light to all who knew her, and her smile brought joy to every room she entered. She loved the Lord first. She loved her husband and family deeply and was passionate about serving her church and teaching students. She will be remembered always and missed by all who had the honor of knowing her.”
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Mary Jones Memorial Scholarship Fund for MMSD, a scholarship fund to help support the needs of children in her community.