Thursday, November 27, 2008

Mary Crockett Bowen Bricker

Mrs. Bricker was known to her contemporaries and family as Mary Crock or, more simply, Crock. To her grandchildren and great grandchildren she was known as Brick-Brick, her son and daughter called her Mother and she was my mother-in-law.

In her day, she did a bit of crocheting but was better known for her ability to teach hard science and math at high school, college and university level. During the war years, Mrs. B., along with her sister-in-law and her future daughter's mother-in-law were the math department at Beaver High School in Bluefield, WV. She earned her undergraduate degree at Queens College, Charlotte, NC in 1934 and in 2004, Dave and I took her and a classmate to their 70th Queens reunion! She earned her Masters at West Virginia University and was all but a dissertation away from her PhD when her parents became ill and needed her care. She won several fellowships including a science fellowship from General Electric and taught at Bluefield College, Bluefield State College, West Virginia University, University of Illinois, Emory University in Atlanta and VA Tech.

She was extremely proud to have been chosen one of the very first cheerleaders at Tazewell High School, Tazewell, VA and would tell tales of those early days to any who would listen.

Mrs. B. supported the efforts of Fiber Femmes she knew and, in year's past, paid postage to have fifty or sixty boxes of yarn sent to The Children's Home in Siberia, Russia.

She was the last of her immediate family, joining her parents, brothers and sister on 19 November 2008. We celebrated her 95th birthday in June and all but seven of the fifty or so guests were family members including children, grand and great grands, niece, nephew, cousins and me.
It was one of those rare, beautiful days...absolutely perfect weather and enough of the "old guard" in attendance to warrant a magical knowledge this was the passing of the torch. We all knew we'd never have this opportunity again and took full advantage of the day to build love and memories. We who were there have that day to hold against the dark nights and frosty world that push against love.

Blessings ~ a life well lived ~ birthdays ~ teachers ~ family ~ friends ~ memories ~