Mary Catherine Oliver, 79, a beloved pillar of the Unicoi, Tennessee community and a loving, kind, and generous mother, grandmother, and friend, went home to be with the Lord on Saturday, May 13, 2023. Born in Johnson City, Tennessee, Mary had a profound impact on those around her with her infinite capacity for love and her unwavering Christian faith.
Mary was the cherished daughter of the late Cecil and Daisy Woodby, and the devoted wife of the late Bill Oliver. She was a brave matriarch who faced the heartbreaking loss of her siblings, Jerry Woodby, Steve Woodby, and Connie Dayton. Sadly, Mary also endured the untimely passing of her grandson, Brian Oliver. Despite these setbacks, Mary carried on with her characteristic resilience and strength, providing unwavering love to her surviving family members.
Mary is survived by her loving son, Harold Oliver (Sherry), and a treasured sister, Angela Dayton. Mary's memory will live on in the hearts of her adoring grandchild, Brandon Oliver, and her precious great-grandchildren—Bella, Madilynn, Emma, Emilee, Lucian, Daisy, and Talon. Mary also leaves behind other special family members, Kim Edwards, Diane & son Mark Spears, Bill & Pauline Flowers, Dessie Oliver, Edna Oliver, Brianna Roberts, and so many close friends there are too many to list, who considered Mary to be an integral part of their lives.
For around 30 years, Mary worked diligently at Red Kap, a company which surely benefited from her strong work ethic and exceptional commitment. Later, she fearlessly served the people of Unicoi County as a jailer at the Unicoi County Jail.
Throughout her life, Mary was an unwavering believer in the power of faith, selflessness, and family, as evidenced by her tireless devotion to the Unicoi Baptist Church. There, she shared her boundless love and Christian teachings as a Sunday School teacher and dutifully fulfilled various other roles as a church officer. Mary's love for her sisters and brothers in Christ was only surpassed by her love for her family.
Mary was well known for her loving heart, kind demeanor, and generous spirit, which earned her the deep respect and admiration of the entire community. As the American Evangelist Dwight L. Moody once said, "A good example is far better than a good precept." Mary embodied this quote in the way she lived and interacted with others. Her compassionate nature, devotion to her faith and family, and her unwavering resilience inspired many, including her closest family members and the congregation of her beloved church.
As we gather to celebrate the life of Mary Catherine Oliver, let us remember her in all her facets: as a loving mother, sister, and friend, as a treasure to her community and her church, and as a beautiful child of God. She will be dearly missed, but her memory will shine brightly in the hearts of those who knew and loved her.
In lieu of flowers, the family memorial contributions be made to the Unicoi County Animal Shelter, 185 N. Industrial Dr, Erwin, TN 37650.