Mary Deaton, of Athens, Georgia, died on February 10, 2024, from pancreatic cancer. She was born on February 4, 1957. She is survived by her brother Jimmy Deaton, nephew Ben (Gina) Deaton, and Ben’s children Norah, Asher, and Margaret. Mary is preceded in death by her parents, Hugh and Clarice Martin Deaton and Jimmy’s wife, Wanda.
Mary was raised on a small farm near Buford and graduated from North Gwinnett High School in 1975. She earned a Bachelor of Industrial Engineering degree in 1979 and Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degree in 1990, both from Georgia Tech. She lived in Athens GA, Milledgeville, GA, Florence, SC, Chapel Hill, NC, and eventually returned to Athens where she resided for the last 26 years. Mary was a highly regarded manufacturing engineer and retired from Eaton Corporation in 2015.
Her rural upbringing instilled a deep appreciation for nature and sparked interest in hobbies like gardening, extensive bird feeding, hiking, bicycling, and travel to State and National Parks. Throughout her life she rescued several dogs and cats with her most recent rescue being her beloved Great Pyrenees mix, Pepper. She had a passion for genealogy and was the family historian. Mary was a private pilot and made her first solo flight on October 21, 1986, in a Cessna 152. She would later obtain an Instrument Rating.
Mary was active in Beech Haven Church where she was co-teacher for the adult ladies Sunday morning group and enjoyed helping with vacation Bible School and neighborhood mission projects. Mary actively volunteered participating in activities through Georgia Baptist Disaster Relief, weekly backpack deliveries with the Food2Kids program, weekly distributions with the Mobile Food Pantry for the Northeast Georgia Food Bank and was a lifelong blood donor.
The family will receive visitors from 5:00 – 8:00 pm on Thursday, February 15 at Lord and Stephens Funeral Home in Athens and from 12:00 – 3:00 pm on Saturday, February 17 at Hamilton Mill Memorial Chapel with a funeral service to follow at 3:00 pm at Hamilton Mill Memorial Chapel. Dr. Stewart Simms and Rev. John Walker will officiate. Interment will follow in the cemetery of Zion Hill Baptist Church, Buford. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to Beech Haven Church Worship Center Fund.
Hamilton Mill Memorial Chapel 770-945-6924 Share memories of Mary at hamiltonmillchapel.com.