Saint Albans – Mary McWilliams, 74, slipped peacefully away, December 24, 2021, at home with her family by her side.
Born June 21, 1947 in Grand Rapids, MI, Mary moved her family to St. Albans, VT in 1980 and resided in St. Albans Town till her last breath. At that time, a stay-at-home mom, she joined a group of women that she referred to as Home Dem”olition”. Gathering with newfound friends to create. Mary had a natural gift. Wreaths made of Princess Pine collected from the woods; Bittersweet from a “secret spot”; corn silk dolls; Indian corn hangings, her creations made her house a home; festive for every holiday. Christmas was her favorite time of year. Frasier Firs from Larry’s Tree Farm early December; her favorite glass of wine in hand, time was taken to place ornaments perfectly on the tree; wrapped presents decorated to match the theme of the year; her masterpiece to be presented on Christmas Day.
Mary was a 2nd mother to many of her children’s friends. Many of them referred to her as “Mom” themselves.
As her children matured, she began working within the community. Volunteering at the school; working at Blouin’s IGA; a bookkeeper for Endurance Sports; and then settling into a career as a local realtor.
Mary’s life story could have been a New York Times best seller. Only those closest to her knew of the trials & tribulations her life entailed. Regardless, she had the ability to face her days with a smile on her face; a twinkle in her unique blue and brown eye; joy to share with anyone she met – even as her battle with cancer came to a close.
Mary is survived by her husband, Alexander “Buddy” McWilliams of St. Albans; brother Jim (Sue) Blanker of Belmont, MI; son Kevin (Nicole) Helms of St. Albans; daughter Michelle Helms & partner James of Enosburg; step-daughter Michelle (Tommy) Weeks of Hot Springs, AK; step-daughter Melissa (Donald) Smith of Columbia, SC; longtime friend Barbara (Rick) Ruiter & best friend, Cheryl Boissoneault-Ledoux.
When the grand & great grand babies were born, you could guarantee that you would find tears of joy streaming down Mary’s face as they cooed and smiled “telling Grandma a story”. She leaves behind her grandchildren: Brittnie (Devin) Bean; Jori Helms & partner Brad; Shawn (Grace) Helms; Jared Helms; Gavyn, Dylan, Bryce & Skyler Leavitt & their father Garth Leavitt; Cody (Shelby) Sorrells; Kayla (Rance) Claypool; Camdyn, Kyler & Kayson Molina; Tommy (Rae Lynn) Bayer; Dustin (Maegan) Bayer and great grandchildren: Baileigh; Kolton, Kenley, Preslee, Grayson, Lane, Rhett, Shaelynn & Raedyn.
She was greeted on the other side by her son, Shawn Helms, brother Roger Blanker & sister Sharon Ozinga.
Per Mary’s request, a service will not be held. A small graveside ceremony will be coordinated during the summer of 2022.
Honored to be serving the McWilliams family is the Heald Funeral Home, where messages of condolence are welcome at www.healdfuneralhome.com.