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Sara

Sara Jean Mashburn

Sara Jean Mashburn, 81, of Amarillo, Texas passed away on March 20, 2024. Jean was born in Memphis, Tennessee on December 15, 1942, to Virginia Ruth and Maurice Melvin Howell.

Growing up as a preacher’s kid, she and her younger sister Helen grew up in three different states, including Corinth, MS, Birmingham, AL, and Chattanooga, TN. She then earned a college degree in Education, attending four colleges along the way: Freed-Hardeman College, David Lipscomb College, Harding College, and then finally graduating from Lamar College in Port Arthur, TX, where her father had taken his next preaching job. There she would meet and marry William Hyer Mashburn, who was the son of one of the Elders who hired her father, on September 4

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, 1964.

They then moved to Houston in the Summer of 1965. That December, her first son Alan was born, followed by Brian in February of 1968, and then Craig in June of 1971, giving them A, B, & C. The boys were blessed to have her as a stay-at-home mom for much of their childhood, and they enjoyed active lives of sports, fun, adventure, friends, church and hot meals around the table every night, never knowing what a tight budget Jean masterfully managed in order to provide it.

Her 21-year teaching career started in 1979 when she began as a substitute, eventually taking over a 4

th

grade class in 1980, and then going full time as an Elementary School teacher in 1981, and finally moving to middle school to teach 6

th

grade math in 1998. She retired in 2000.

She loved being a mom, and was always active in PTA, being a sport’s team mom, a band parent, and chaperoning church youth events. She loved animals, and especially in her later years, her dogs always ended up being loving and constant companions. She loved music and singing. In fact, the only “luxury item” that she ever owned that the family can think of was an organ, and she learned to use it quickly to accompany her voice. Right up to the very end, in fact, even as her memory failed her in every other area, she could still sing the old hymns, and her voice still rang strong.

Jean also loved being a “Nana.” She always wished she had more energy and capacity to be a part of all of grandkid’s activities and would grin from ear to ear anytime she was able to see or hear about all that they would do. She treasured every visit, every word, every picture, and every hug of every grandkid.

Jean loved her friends. Whenever she made a friend, she was willing to bond, deepen, and maintain that friendship for as long as that friend wanted. She upheld friendships from every season of her life. Long after mom’s memory was gone, Brian would still get calls and letters from old friends and neighbors asking about Jean because they couldn’t get a hold of her. She shared freely, without much inhibition, and listened just as freely, without judgement and with great grace and love.

Above all else, Jean loved God. In her second half of life, she spent most of her time intimately getting to know the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. She loved the church, too, and despite plenty of reasons to give up on it, she never judged Jesus because of Jesus’ followers, even when they let her down. She instilled this wisdom into her boys through her example, protecting them with her life from having reasons to turn from God or His people. She naturally served people when she saw a need, both in the church family and outside of it. She was comfortable no matter someone’s situation, and her ability to laugh with others about nothing, or cry with others about the worst things, made her a useful ambassador of God’s grace to anyone God might send her way.

Jean will always be remembered for her homemade cheesecake, and the way that she always fought the losing battle for her boys to eat healthy (her “all-vegetable meals” for the boys growing up were never embraced). The boys couldn’t have asked for a better mom, and will miss her, but are so glad that her suffering is over, her memory is restored, and that she is now where she has wanted to be for years.

Jean was preceded in death by her dad, Maurice Melvin Howell; mother, Virginia Ruth Howell; and sister, Helen Noblett.

She is survived by her three sons, Alan Mashburn and wife Rhonda, Brian Mashburn and wife Carrie, Craig Mashburn and wife Vicky, and her seven grandchildren, Stephen, Shade, Michael, Callie, Jakin, Jack, and Gracie.

Memorial services will be held at the Southwest Church of Christ at 4515 Cornell, Amarillo, Texas, 79109 at 10:00am, Saturday, April 6, 2024.
To send flowers to the family in memory of Sara Jean Mashburn, please visit our flower store.

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