Mary Louise Pryor

November 03, 1928, December 02, 2018

Mary Louise Pryor

Mary Louise Pecora Pryor, a life long resident of Beaumont, Texas, died at the age of 90 on Sunday, December 2, 2018, with her two daughters by her side. Born in Beaumont on November 3, 1928, she was deeply loved by her family and her countless friends are a testament to the joy she gave everyone who knew her.

She was born into a loving family; her father and his brother built a home and the two families lived as one during the Depression and WWII. She and her brother, Charles, and cousins, Lucille and Martha Gayle were raised together and the stories they told about growing up were so wonderful.

A graduate of Beaumont High School, Mary Louise received a teaching degree from Texas State College for Women (now Texas Woman’s University). Upon her graduation from college, she married the love of her life and high school sweetheart, Jimmy Pryor. They were married for 65 years until his death in 2015. Theirs was truly one of those rare and beautiful relationships and she saved all the love letters and poems he wrote to her during their lives together. 

She began her career as a first grade teacher at Averill Elementary School and later went on to teach at Eugene Field Elementary, retiring from the Beaumont Independent School District after more than 30 years. It wasn’t unusual for a former student to stop to tell her how much she had meant to them. 

Jimmy and Mary Louise had many, many friends. There was a core group they had known since high school who stayed close through the years and the families made wonderful memories together. They spent many happy years enjoying their house on Crystal Beach. It served as the gathering place for our family and we all cherish our times at the beach with them.  For years, they were avid travelers and toured, caravan-style, with friends all over the United States. 

Mary Louise was a dancer in every sense of the word – from the time she strapped on her first tap shoes, she loved to dance. She was a student at the Widman School of Dance until college – taking tap, ballet, toe and jazz.  She dreamed of being a Rockette at Radio City Music Hall. She loved to jitterbug when she was young and two-step and slow dance with Jimmy and, for many years, they never missed a Caper Club dance. 

She enjoyed her volunteer work, especially as one of the St. Pius Ladies and as a Eucharistic Minister at St. Pius X Catholic Church. 

She was a loving wife and the strength of our family when Jimmy was declining with Alzheimer’s.  She was a beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother and was fiercely proud of all of us and so supportive of our interests- from basketball and bull riding to dance and theatre and everything in between. 

Her joy was infectious, her love was unbounded, and she lived a life of integrity and grace. We will miss her presence in our lives but know her light is still shining for us now.

Mary Louise is survived by her children, Sidney Ann Pryor Coffee and Holly Lucille Pryor Waldvogel; grandchildren, Albert Tyler Coffee, Mathew Pryor Coffee and his wife, Jessica, Wakelyn Christina Malitz, and Albert James Waldvogel; great-grandchildren, Noah Austin Brown, Dafne Coffee, Anna Beth Coffee, Aubree Claire Coffee, and Albert Miguel Coffee; and her brother, Charles Pecora.

She is preceded in death by her father, Dr. Tony Lawrence Pecora, and her mother, Lucille Petta Pecora.

Our family gives special thanks to the staff of Brookdale Dowlen Oaks in Beaumont – especially Rhonda, Neecie, Kayli, and Shy and all who showed her such love. We also thank Wanda Menefee and Viola Walker for the special care they gave her and the caregivers at Kindred Hospice for their many kindnesses. 

Memorial contributions may be made to Alzheimer’s Association, 700 North Street, Beaumont, Texas, 77707.

Video

Broussard's Mortuary - McFaddin Avenue
2000 Mcfaddin Avenue Beaumont, TX 77701
A Gathering of Mrs. Pryor's Family and Friends
St. Pius X Church
5075 Bignr Road Beaumont, TX 77708
Wednesday, December 12, 2018
11:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m.
Memorial Mass
St. Pius X Catholic Church
5075 Bigner Beaumont, TX 77708
Wednesday, December 12, 2018
12:00 p.m.
Broussard's Crematorium
5150 Stivers Street Beaumont, TX 77705

Comments (9)

  • Rosemary Ryan

    12 December 2018 at 13:38 | #

    All of us who ever taught with Mrs Pryor just adored her. Shewas the most wonderful first grade teacher any child could be fortunate to have! Her students adored her. I taught with her at Field towards the end of her long career, and she taught me so much about teaching the minds of little ones!
    Mrs. Pryor was a cheerful, loving, generous, and kind woman who left a beautiful imprint on our world. I’m sure heaven is rejoicing now that lovely Mrs. Pryor is dancing on the clouds!

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  • Karen Baker

    10 December 2018 at 16:40 | #

    Sydney Anne, I have such fond memories of your mom when we were growing up. She was always so sweet. I bet she and my mom are having a reunion in heaven. I will be praying for peace for you and your family.
    Love,
    Karen Donley Baker

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  • Diane Duplechain

    09 December 2018 at 05:20 | #

    She was a great teacher to my children many years ago at Eugene Field. Also a good friend to our family. Prayers

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  • Mary Pierson Ferguson

    08 December 2018 at 01:19 | #

    Holly I am so sorry to hear about your mom. My mom lives where your mom was and I spoke to her all the time for the last 2 1/2 years. She was so sweet!! So sorry, Mary

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  • Candy Mathis Hollis

    07 December 2018 at 22:41 | #

    My parents, Lewis and Wanda Smith, were friends with Mr. and Mrs. Pryor. When they visited our home both were so very nice. Mrs. Pryor always had that lovely smile. Please know that you have my deepest sympathy

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  • Phyllis M. Miller

    07 December 2018 at 16:55 | #

    I taught school with Mrs. Pryor at Eugene Field Elem. When I was a beginning teacher she was very kind to help me and offer advice. She was also a good friend of my mothers. Over her long teaching career she started so many young students on their adventure in learning academic skills as well as important life lessons. Thank you Mrs. Pryor and rest in peace.

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  • Charlotte O'Quinn Arceneaux

    06 December 2018 at 03:18 | #

    Dear Sydney Anne and Holly, so sorry for the loss of your Mom. She was always so cheerful and always spoke when she saw me or my Mom. Remember you both coming to costume fittings at recital time. I pray that your memories will ease the grief that you are feeling. My Prayers and thoughts are with you both and your families. Love and hugs, Charlotte

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  • Charlotte O'Quinn Arceneaux

    06 December 2018 at 03:18 | #

    Dear Sydney Anne and Holly, so sorry for the loss of your Mom. She was always so cheerful and always spoke when she saw me or my Mom. Remember you both coming to costume fittings at recital time. I pray that your memories will ease the grief that you are feeling. My Prayers and thoughts are with you both and your families. Love and hugs, Charlotte

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  • Charlotte Zoch

    04 December 2018 at 22:29 | #

    Holly, so sorry to hear about your mom. She was always so cheerful ,happy and full of life. Hold on to all the GOOD TIMES ya'll had together..... Jer 29:: 11-12

    reply

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