Mary Graham McKell, 91, of Chillicothe, Ohio passed away on July 14, 2020 in her home surrounded by her family. A loving wife, mother, and grandmother, she will be deeply missed. She is survived by her husband of 65 years, Dr. Joseph Scott McKell, six children, Donald Graham McKell (Sithan) of Sunbury, Ohio, Mary Elizabeth McKell of Reno, Nevada, Susan McKell Marriott of Chillicothe, Ohio, Anne McKell Hoover (Gary) of Ponte Vedra, FL, Martha McKell Price (Craig) of Dublin, Ohio and Joanne Lucie McKell (Ben) of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, and 14 grandchildren, Erin Nicole Mueller, Samuel James Marriott, Luke McKell Marriott, Kristen McKell Cofield, Eric Richard Hoover, Henry Carl Meier, Daniel Joseph Hoover, Daniel Scott Marriott, Megan McKell Price, Walter Graham Meier, Claire McKell Price, Rachael McKell Price, Max Joseph Seligman, and William Arieh Seligman.
Mary was born in Prineville, Oregon October 12, 1928 to the late Donald and Lucie Graham. She enjoyed a childhood in the idyllic Oregon countryside, growing up in a close relationship with her older sister, the late Julia McFadden. Mary attended the University of Oregon and graduated with degrees in History and English. She went on to earn a Master of Arts in English from the University of Colorado. After several years of teaching high school English, she moved to San Francisco where she met her future husband. Mary and Dr. Joseph Scott McKell were married on April 23, 1955 and moved to Chillicothe, Ohio in November 1956 where they have remained ever since.
A deeply devoted and spiritual woman, Mary was a faithful member and volunteer at her church, St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. She served as the Chairman of the Altar Guild, the President of St. Anne’s Guild and was the founding member of St. Paul’s Knitting Circle. In April 2018 she was inducted into the Society of Saint Simeon and Saint Anna, a society that celebrates and acknowledges the wisdom, experience, maturity and ministries of longtime Episcopalian church members. She particularly enjoyed preparing the altar for worship services and displayed a special talent in floral arranging.
In addition to being a woman of faith, Mary was a gifted seamstress, knitter, needlepointer, and quilter her whole life. She created an incredible collection of items which are treasured by her family. Another passion of Mary’s was traveling with her husband to beautiful beachside destinations, especially the Cayman Islands. Mary and Joseph enjoyed a deep, loving, and respectful friendship with one another, characterized by intellectual discussions. They also enjoyed good food, time with their devoted children, and a special affinity for current events.
Most important to Mary was her family. A dedicated spouse, mother, and grandmother, Mary found a deep sense of joy and meaning from these roles and relationships. Her 65 year marriage is a picture to her children and grandchildren of love and devotion. Mary particularly enjoyed hosting her grandchildren for “Camp Grammy” during the summer holiday and making sure they each had a well-rounded education in all things Chillicothe, cross-stitching, grooming, fort-building, and card games. Mary was also an amazing hostess and created a seemingly magical environment for her grandchildren during the holidays.
Mary had a private funeral in her home surrounded by family and friends. The service was officiated by the Reverend Paul Daggett on Tues, July 21, 2020. Graveside service was held at Grandview Cemetery. Funeral arrangements were under the direction of the WARE FUNERAL HOME.
A private reception was held in Mary’s honor and memory at the Chillicothe Country Club. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Altar Guild of St. Paul’s Church, 33 East Main Street, Chillicothe, Ohio 45601.
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