Mary Stewart Covington of The Pines at Davidson died Monday morning, Jan. 3, at her home. She was 81.
She was born in Scotland County on Jan. 21, 1929 , the daughter of Robert Roland Covington and Elizabeth McAlpine Gordon.
Educated at Peace College and Flora McDonald College, she was a graduate of Queens College. She was a first grade teacher at Davidson Elementary School for many years, where her creativity and energy inspired innovations in the teaching of young children. Her classroom was always a vortex of learning, fed by the unusual elements she brought into the environment. The classroom was home to many—among them a one-eyed flying squirrel, a rabbit, and a tank full of fish. She visited the home of every student she ever taught and worked tirelessly to ensure their success.
Her compassion for the plight of the less fortunate made her an ardent supporter of the civil rights movement in the early 1960s, and a long term volunteer for Habitat for Humanity in her later years. She was always deeply involved in the work of the church, wherever that might take her.
Mary Stewart Covington was preceded in death by her first husband, Hurd Grier Bradford Jr, and is survived by her children, Elizabeth Gordon Bradford and Hurd Grier Bradford III, and her grandchildren Sally Bradford Watson, Hurd Grier Bradford IV and David, Gordon, and Stewart Millsaps, as well as three great grandchildren. She was also preceded in death by her second husband William Thomas Bost Jr., of Chapel Hill, and her third husband William Thomas Covington of Charlotte. She enjoyed the love and attention of her stepchildren, Barbara Bost Moseley, John Eubank Covington and William Thomas Covington Jr.
A memorial service will be held at 11:00 on Friday, January 7 at Davidson College Presbyterian Church, and a reception afterwards at the Congregation House, Concord Road, Davidson, NC. Visitation will take place at the Pines Parlor at 2:00 on Friday.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that contributions be made for the benefit of the Mary Stewart and William T. Covington Jr. Scholarship through the Foundation for the Carolinas, 217 S. Tryon St., Charlotte, NC 28202. The scholarship provides need- and merit-based scholarships to students from Hoke County.
Samuel S. James, FSL, of Huntersville is serving the family. www.lakenormanfunerals.com