Mary Ann Hill


Mary Ann Hill
Mary Ann Hill

On August 9, 2021, in the early morning hours before the beginning of the work week, Mary Ann Hill, loving wife and mother of two children joined the love of her life Bill who had preceded her to heaven to rejoice with her Lord and Savior Christ Jesus.

Mary was born on May 8, 1935, to Andrew J. and Lillian (Duncan) Garner in San Gabriel, Texas.

She was the second youngest of nine children born to a tenant farmer in a conservative home.  Attended the First Baptist Church of San Gabriel every Sunday.

She said her Father took them to church and her mother stayed home to have Sunday dinner prepared for them.

Her Mother being a seamstress made sure they had nice clothes to wear and polished their shoes with biscuits, an unintended consequence being that the files usually liked their shoes and followed them around.  They could invite or go to one of their many cousins for the day.  Her favorite was to go to Aunt Bessie and have ice cream made in a refrigerator.  They played house in the cane stalks that made a private tent.

Being the tomboy of the family of two boys and seven girls, Mary usually did not want dolls for Christmas but did enjoy giving her younger sister Lucy’s dolls haircuts or operations to see why they cried.  She learned to be competitive at an early age because she was allowed to drive the John Deere tracker to the gin if she picked 100 pounds of cotton in a single day.

She accomplished this goal at age 6.

Going to college as a first-generation student on a basketball scholarship she met the love of her life Bill Dale Hill in Clarendon, Texas, where he was a high school student. Once he saw this junior college beauty, he started showing off to her by doing tricks on the trampoline while she was teaching a class.  They were married on January 5, 1956, in San Gabriel, Texas. They were a dynamic couple never apart from each other for 62 years until Bill passed away in 2017.

Mary received her B.S. from WTSU in 1962 and her M.Ed. from WTSU in 1968.  She was a tenured college professor at WT teaching Kinesiology.

Mary also started and coached Women’s Track and Field and Women’s Softball at WT as there were no women’s collegiate sports.  She felt it was important to have these as it allowed women to compete and then become coaches themselves once they graduated and help them secure jobs in the high schools of the Texas Panhandle.  Mary also taught outdoor recreation which became useful as she and Bill ran a private summer camp in the mountains of New Mexico for 14 years and all of the counselors were former students of this class who had been observed and graded unbeknownst to them.  Everything Mary did she did with purpose. When once being interviewed for an article, she was asked if she experienced any challenges as a female as she advanced in her career.   She stated that when she was 50 and was asked by the President of the University to become the Chief Student Affairs Officer/ Dean of Students it was an honor, and she took the position and gave it her best.  Mary started many programs that are today still being replicated across the United States in Universities one being Peer Educators.  However, when she retired, they immediately made the position Vice-President of Student Affairs with a $10,000 increase.  Most would be incensed, Mary said I loved my position and was not in the position for the money or title but for the impact I hope to make on the students I had the opportunity to work with.  In that same interview, the question of wish to share in regards of “I wish someone would have told me?” her response was “Someone DID tell me. I always felt the Holy Spirit led me and I would say, ‘listen to every small nudge’ to make the very best decisions you can make in life, and you will have peace and happiness.”

Mary is predeceased by her husband Bill Dale Hill, her father Andrew Jackson Garner, mother Lillian (Duncan) Garner, brothers Clifford Duncan Garner; Andrew Jackson Garner Jr; Sisters; Verna Jo Malone; Evelyn E. Adams: Lillian L. Stiles; Bobbye Treuthardt.

She is survived by her sisters Doris Haepp; Lucy Bess Ditmore. Mary is also survived by her daughter Phyllis Ann Clary and husband Charles, son Dr. Trent Hill and wife Carole.  Her grandchildren Reed Jeffery Redus (wife Amy), Major  Riley John Redus, U.S. Army, John Wayne Hill (wife Megan), Alex Clary, Naudia Vasquez, and Nikolaus Roark and great-grandchildren, Noah and Emmarie Redus, Sierra, Ella, and Caleb Redus, Ryan, Jace and Riker Hill, Lauren Clary.

Mary will be forever remembered by her large and loving family and innumerable former students, athletes and campers.

Viewing will be available from Noon-8:00 P.M., Tuesday, August 10, 2021, at Boxwell Brothers Funeral Home, 2800 Paramount Blvd., Amarillo, Texas.

Services will be held at First Baptist Church Amarillo on Wednesday, August 11, 2021, at 10:30 am in the Chapel.  And Friday, August 13, 2021, at First Baptist Church Canyon Lake, Texas at 10:00 am.

Graveside following at Fischer Cemetery, Fischer Tx.

In lieu of flowers, the Family suggests that memorial contributions be sent to the Bill and Mary Hill Scholarship Fund at West Texas A&M University. Or to a charity that benefits young people as this was Mary’s passion.

16 Replies to “Mary Ann Hill”

  1. Today I was thinking of Ms. Mary and her amazing family. I knew her for a short time, but spending my weekends with her were always eventful. Condolences to her family.

  2. Mary Hill was an amazing lady. I took her country and western dance class at West Texas State in the late ’70’s. She was an awesome instructor and I thoroughly enjoyed her class. She was definitely a well known icon at WTSU. My most sincere sympathies to her family and friends.

  3. Phyllis and Trent, Carrie and I (Mason twins) want to send our condolences. We love your family and even though it’s been a long time we want you to know we’re thinking of y’all ♥️
    Love, Sherry Mason Giles and Carrie Mason McKay

  4. Our sincere sympathy. Having worked with Mr. Hill at Pucket Elementary, I knew the depth of love between Mary Ann and Bill. Love to Phylis and the entire family.

    Vicky Dearing

  5. Mary Hill was an amazing woman! I learned so much from her during the times we drove back and forth the WT to teach. She was an awesome mentor to me. Bill Hill was also a mentor a few years later when I went to work at AISD. He gave me some advice about sticky situations that I have never forgot – Did you cause it? Can you control it? Can you cure it? If the answer is no to these, then it’s not your problem to worry about. My condolences to Trent and Phyllis and the rest of the family.

  6. Bill Hill was my principal to my 3 children at Puckett Elementary. I always quote him as he wrote this at the bottom of every newsletter sent home once a month: “The greatest gift a father can give his children is to love their mother.” I knew then that he & his loving wife, Mary, were a very special pair! May God continue to bless their family members as they seek comfort from losing them on earth, but providing heaven with two marvelous angels! Remembering them with love!

  7. Mary Hill will always live in my memories as a tough as nails, dedicated loving coach and teacher to me. She was indeed special and played a huge role in me becoming a coach and teacher myself. She and Bill always welcomed all of us into their home with love and food. Was a privilege to have known her.

  8. Bill and Mary Hill were always fun, energetic, sweet Christian folks that walked the talk…heartfelt sympathy to their extended family…thankful they were people that invested in me and my sisters…
    Debby Ruthart Spivey and family♥️

  9. I loved her classes at WT. She taught me about what really good teachers were like. She gave all of us a role model to look to for inspiration. I know Bill was so happy to welcome Mary home. Love and prayers for her family from a former student whom she made to feel like family.

  10. I loved her classes at WT. She was such an amazing example of the kind of teacher I wanted to become. I know Bill was excited to welcome her home at last! Rest easy, Mrs. Hill–you taught us well!

  11. Mary was one of my favorite people. I loved her energy and the chemistry between her and our Bill. They are probably teaching praise dancing together in heaven. 🎻🎻

  12. Mary gave me a lot of encouragement as a young person! My prayers for Phyllis and Trent as they say goodbye.

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