Cover photo for Mary Theresa Nelson Mason's Obituary
Mary Theresa Nelson Mason Profile Photo
1938 Mary 2022

Mary Theresa Nelson Mason

May 25, 1938 — September 28, 2022

Mary Theresa Nelson Mason
5/25/1938 - 9/28/2022

Mary Theresa was born at her family's home on Orange Street in Beaumont on her father's birthday in 1938. The second child of Magnus Nelson and Vlasta Miculka, she grew up alongside her brother Bill, surrounded by loving relatives and friends. Mary Theresa (or "Tess" as she was often called) had a beautiful voice and spent a large portion of her teenage years touring the world with Eloise Milam's Melody Maids. She loved sharing stories of trips to Germany, France, Haiti, Hawaii, and even Greenland. A member of the Royal Purple Queens drill team, she graduated from Beaumont High School in 1956 and began studying business at Lamar University where she joined the Alpha Chi Omega sorority and was elected Homecoming Queen in 1958. She met Harry Mason, Jr. on a blind date set up by mutual friends, and they married in 1959. While living in Houston as Harry completed pharmacy school, she gave birth to her first daughter, Sharon Elaine. When Harry graduated, they returned to Beaumont so he could join his father running Highland Avenue Pharmacy. A second daughter, Phyllis Marie, arrived in 1965, and the family moved to South Park, where they joined the congregation of St. Paul's United Methodist Church, where she and Harry would remain members until its closure in 2016. Ten years after their second child, they had their third daughter, Erin Elizabeth. Throughout her life, Mary loved to create and be surrounded by beauty. A talented artist, she drew portraits of many family members and friends, including many of the students at the Lamar's Early Child Development Center where she taught for several years after the family sold the pharmacy. From school bulletin boards to vacation bible school villages, she could take limited resources and create amazing displays. Her mother's talents as a gifted seamstress were passed down to her, and she deftly sewed many dresses and costumes for her children and grandchildren. While she enjoyed quiet times by herself, she was happiest when in the presence of children, especially her grandchildren.
Mary Theresa is survived by her husband Harry and her daughters Sharon (Gary) McLendon, Phyllis (Simon) Hunter, and Erin (Derek Lemons) Mason. She also leaves behind her grandchildren Blake Hayes, Hannah Shell, Maxwell Hunter, Rebecca Hunter, Charles Hunter, and Thora Mason-Lemons as well as a great-granddaughter, Shiloh Shell.
The immediate family will have a private celebration of life ceremony this week but plans on having a larger gathering of friends and family at a later date.
The family would like to extend their heartfelt thanks to the staff of Harbor Hospice and to Mary Allen, her dedicated caregiver.
If you would like to make a donation in her memory, the family suggests Nutrition & Services for Seniors of Beaumont whose Meals on Wheels program made such an impact on Mary Theresa's well-being.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Mary Theresa Nelson Mason, please visit our flower store.


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