Obituary: Mary Lois Smith Horton

Mary Lois Smith Horton, age 87, died Wednesday, March 12, in Dowling Park.
Mary had been a resident at Advent Christian Village for over thirteen years.  She and her husband, Robert Benjamin Horton, deceased, were former residents of St. Augustine.
A graveside service was held at 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 16, at Hays Cemetery in Lee with Tim Setzer, pastor of the Village Church, officiating.  A Celebration of Life service will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, April 19, in the Village Chapel. Dr. Geoffrey Lentz, husband of one of Mary’s granddaughters, will bring the memorial message and remembrances. Memories will also be shared through a musical audiovisual presentation. Lunch will be provided following the service.
Mary was born in Tarpon Springs, on November 22, 1926, to Almon and Louetta Smith.
During World War II, her father was sent by the Coast Guard to work in St. Augustine, and her family relocated there.  She met her husband, R.B. Horton when he returned from service in the Army in New Guinea and the Philippines in 1946. Mary was employed by Florida East Coast Railway in those early years.
Mary served her Lord at Ancient City Baptist Church and St. Augustine Baptist Church for 45 years, working in the children’s ministry and serving in the mission organizations of both churches.
She is survived by her five daughters: Mary Teresa Horton of Cocoa; Linda Diane Milnes of Dowling Park; Doris Elaine Murdoch of Live Oak; Jean Marie Derr of Citra; and Susan Gayle Alderman of Haines City, eleven grandchildren; and eighteen great-grandchildren; three sisters: Maxine Edmunds of St. Augustine; Carole Raker of Lake City; and Laverne Schmid of Folkston, Ga., along with many other loved ones.
In lieu of flowers you may send a donation to the Hays Cemetery Fund, c/o Frances Mercer, 3012 NE CR 255, Lee, FL, 32059; or the Alzheimer’s Association at http://m.alz.org, or c/o Diane Milnes, P.O. Box 4022, Dowling Park, FL 32064.
Beggs Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.  Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting the website at www.beggsfuneral.com.
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