Mary Ada Hemphill Johnson-Austin went to be with the Lord on Sunday August 23rd, 2020 at age 88.
Mary was born on June 22nd, 1932 in Juliet, Florida to John D. and Julia McKay Hemphill. Mary was the oldest of 4 siblings and is survived by her younger sister Susie Hemphill-Blauser.
As a child Mary loved to play outside on tricycles through mud puddles and enjoy simple life pleasures of growing up on a small farm with cows and chickens. She lived in a small house in the everglades on the southern shore of Lake Okeechobee. Mary attended Belle Glade High School where she was voted “Most Bashful” in her high school annual.
In 1951, Mary married Leo Johnson both just 19 years old. Leo was a line chef in the Army and they were stationed in Atterbury, Indiana residing in Flat Rock. By 1964, they had three beautiful children, David, Juanita and Johnny. They lived and traveled all over the world including Ft. Meade, Maryland, Asmara, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ft. Benning Columbus Georgia, and Smith Station in Baumholder, Germany. A few years after her husband Leo died while stationed in Viet Nam, Mary moved with their three children back to Rainbow Springs to be near family.
In 1976, Mary started her career working as a mail carrier for the United States Postal Service in Dunnellon. She proudly delivered mail for many years and considered her co-workers as part of her chosen family.
In 1996, Mary was remarried to her long-time friend Harlow Henry Austin. They shared a small ceremony with family and friends in her home on the Rainbow River.
Mary was a long-time member of the First United Methodist Church of Dunnellon where she proudly served the Lord Jesus Christ.
During her senior years, Mary moved to Orlando, Florida to live with her daughter Juanita and husband Robert Carter. She attended Day Break through Easter Seals on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Mary participated in many activities including making several pieces of artwork and dressing up in costumes for various holiday parties.
Mary’s hobbies included genealogy, sewing, reading, watching passerby on the Rainbow River and spending time with her family.
Mary is survived by her daughter-in-law Karen Johnson, daughter Juanita Carter and son-in-law Robert Carter, six grandchildren, three great grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.
Mary’s celebration of life will be on Monday August 31st at 11:00 am at the First United Methodist Church of Dunnellon.
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