Mary Ruth Brown Bechtol

Mary Ruth Brown Bechtol, 82, of Canyon, TX passed away on December 4, 2020, in Amarillo, Texas at BSA Hospital. She was born on December 11, 1937, in Duncan, Oklahoma.
Private family services were held.

Mary Bechtol was a recognized artist and has had a love affair with the arts ever since a third-grade teacher in her native Oklahoma taught her to paint to music. She grew up on the Southern Plains, her family moved frequently, and she noticed the subtle differences in the landscape. This influenced her art for rest of her life.

Mary studied art at West Texas A&M University, Canyon, Texas and has also had the good fortune to study with many “greats” in classes and private workshops including Stephan Kramer, Scott Burdick and Rick Howell. She realized a life-long dream of being a featured artist in a gallery in New York City.

Mary graduated from Borger High School in 1956, received her Registered Nurses Degree from Northwest Texas Hospital School of Nursing in 1960, worked as a registered nurse, a commodity and stockbroker and raised a family of three daughters alongside her husband David, a large-animal veterinarian. They began their career in Dimmitt, Texas in 1966 opening up Dimmitt Veterinary Clinic and then in 1974 established a veterinary consulting practice in Canyon, Texas.  She was the Chief Financial Officer of all of the family-owned businesses, including the Cowboy Café, Bechtol Fine Arts, and Bechtol Girls LTD. She was also an avid bird-watcher. She and David made their home on a farm in Canyon.

Mary is survived by her husband of 61 years, David Thaxton Bechtol; her three daughters, Gayla Bechtol, Carla Jean Wright (Greg), and Paula Bechtol Craig (Harry); seven grandchildren, Davianne Stokes (Robbie), Joshua Watson (Jenna), Burgess Wicker (Chris), Andrew Marshall, Isabel Craig, Caroline Craig, and Nerissa Bechtol Wuest; and seven great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her sister, Rebecca Brown (Verda); and two brothers, Paul (Duane) J. Brown, Jr. (Deanne), and Don Brown (Aline).

She was preceded in death by her Mother and Father, Martha Burgess Brown and Paul Jackson Brown; and two sisters, Bobbye Evatt (John) and Jeannette Elmquist (Gordon).

She never met a stranger and was beloved by all who knew her.

15 Replies to “Mary Ruth Brown Bechtol”

  1. I was shocked to learn of Mary Bechtol’s passing. We knew her through representation of her art by Seaside Gallery, which we sold to a new owner in September 2020. She was a wonderful person who I always enjoyed talking with o n the telephone. She exhibited integrity and compassion and knowledge. When I did not find her ad in Fine Art Connoisseur, I went looking for her website and stumbled on the obituary. It sadden me. Having never met her in person, I gather she was of a bigger than life personality, so the loss must be hard on the family. Our prayers are with you and we will always remember her warmly. Tom

  2. David and Family,
    We just now heard about Mary’s passing in December. Since we’re not on social media, it was another camera club member who is now out of state who let us know.
    We have so many wonderful memories of Mary. We were so fortunate to have her friendship and share so many warm happy times around your casa, and out in the field for camera club trips. And, the wagon train trip to Jackson Wyoming is absolutely one of the best memories.
    Please know that we share your loss and are thinking of you. Be well.

    1. Thank you very much
      We are still in shock too
      We are having a celebration fir her life July 24th here at the studio
      Everyone invited

    1. She was always one of my favorite cattle feeder friends. Blessings to you David. Sharon McDonald

  3. Mary”s passing leaves me shocked and just so sorry for those of is who knew her! I know she is in a better place now and looking back on this earthly plane with a smile on her face!

  4. Mary was a memory-maker. She shared so much love with her family and friends, and even people she had just met! That was my experience. Mary was the welcoming “matriarch”, actually one of four siblings, who brought their Brown Family reunion to Guthrie’s Oklahoma’s International Bluegrass Festival year after year. I have been blessed to know these folks since 2012. Mary and the family “adopted “ me and other music-lovers to join their jam circle, to eat some great food, and to laugh and share friendship. Mary was a talented paint artist with her own gallery, a super mom and grandma, an instrument collector, an alto who harmonized on favorite hymns with her sister, a laid-back hostess with the most-ess who made me feel great every time I ambled into her RV circle and pitched my tent. Rest In Peace, Mary. I’m so sorry we’ve lost you. Blessings and peace to David, the girls, and all family and friends.
    Last be, Verla

  5. The Bechtol household was my “home away from home” through most of my high school years. Mary was always so warm and inviting and would often sit at the table and drink coffee and talk with me. She made me feel special and her artwork was phenomenal. I especially loved the “bubble” paintings. Memories. Sending much love to the Bechtol family.

  6. Paula and family, we are so so sorry! Your mama was a beautiful person and we know she will be truly missed! Prayers for comfort!

  7. Alfred Skoog, the choir director at Borger High School from which Mary graduated, called her BROWN. My earliest memory of her was of a strong alto in the front row who participated in a sometimes continuous but friendly exchange with this demanding artist. Understandably, as a senior Mary did not remember me, a sophomore boy, until her daughter Gayla came to work with me. Mary’s reaction to this was “Well I never thought you’d have to go all way to New York City to work for an architect from Borger, Texas”. Goodbye BROWN! May you you Rest In Peace

  8. Mary was always one of my favorite people. Her dry sense of humor made everyone love her. My blessings to you David. I’m sure Richard was there to welcome her into paradise

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