Mary Lenora Gregory, 74, passed away in her home on Tuesday, June 25, 2019. She was born on March 21, 1945, to the late Walter J. Browne and Aletha Browne Dew in Louisiana.
It is impossible to sum the character of the woman some called Mary and some called Lenore, but all could agree on one thing, once you met her she would not be forgotten. When she was in a room, the room suddenly felt alive and warm with an energy that is hard to explain. Looking through photographs, Mary is always moving which makes it difficult to find ones where she is still. She was always doing something -- usually playing with or tending to her children and especially grandchildren. She taught us what it is to love with your whole heart. You just knew you were loved around her; you felt it as tangibly as a blanket around your shoulders. There were times she would fuss at you, but it did not change the understanding that she was fiercely in your corner and would stand between you and anything that might hurt you.
Mary was a young wife, a fun mother, and an energetic grandmother. She kept that vibrant spirit for the rest of her life. She liked to drive fast, sometimes while applying make-up and then asking you to steer. She liked to run her horse, dressed with individual style, and collect beautiful things. She enjoyed all holidays with family, but she treasured Christmas. Thinking back, she felt that way because she knew everyone would be together. She decorated her tree meticulously so that every specially chosen piece would be seen and appreciated.
Along with her parents, Mary is preceded in death by her son, Robert Joseph Connally; brother, Walter Jackson Browne, Jr.; sisters, Bessie Mae and Laverne; niece, Roseanna; and nephews, Butch and Jerry.
Left to cherish her memory is her husband, Robert Gregory; son, Dr. Ronald D. (Becki) Connally; daughter, Elizabeth Renee Connally Gaston; grandchildren, Brett Cullen Connally, Anthony Edward (Kaela) Gaston, Chistopher Joseph Gaston, Austin Michael Connally, Reese Matthew Connally, and Cecelia Alexandra Connally; great-grandchildren, Alexandra Cadance and Iyla Marie; along with numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
Mary treated her kids like equals and they all grew up together, supporting each other in a way most families do not. She taught her children to stand with each other in a way that is rarely seen. She invited all 6 of her grandchildren to spend most weekends when they were young -- playing, riding horses and four-wheelers, and generally getting muddy. As a result, she would hose them down before allowing them back into the house. She helped her grandchildren create elaborate train tracks throughout her home. She trekked through Disney World, zoos, and parks to share in their lives. She went on hikes through the woods in Tennessee, even rode a train through the Smoky Mountains just because her grandsons loved trains. She had a special place for all her boys and laughed at all their mischief (sometimes even taking part) and dare anyone to say anything about it. She cherished her only granddaughter-always calling her, “my little angel, God sent to me.”
Mary’s children Bobby Joe, Ronald, and Renee were blessed to call her Mom. Bobby and Mary worked together and built many moments of memories that he can draw upon, knowing he had a partner who loved him.
The visitation for Mary will be held Friday, June 28, 2019, from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. at Heritage Funeral Home in Moss Point, MS. The committal service will be held on Saturday, June 29, 2019, beginning at 10:00 a.m. at Mobile Memorial Gardens in Mobile, AL, with Very Reverend James F. Zoghby officiating.
Mary Lenore (Browne) Gregory was a force on this earth who will not be forgotten. Her love and laugh will continue to warm us throughout our lives.
A chapel service will be held at 10am on Saturday, 06/29/2019 from Funeral Home, followed by a committal service at the grave site.