Mary Lee Terry

Photo of Mary Lee Terry
Mary Lee Terry, age 82, of Fayetteville, died March 14 after a short illness. She was born July 17, 1936 in Oklahoma City, the third daughter of Eugene and Iona Mae Hodges. She was a member of Mission Blvd. Baptist Church in Fayetteville. Mary graduated from Central High School in Oklahoma City in 1954 and moved along with her mother to Bryan, Texas that same year. She married Charles Worth Murphy in 1955. They lived in Texas and California before settling in Oklahoma City. They had two children Christopher Alan and Mary Kathleen. They divorced after 10 years of marriage. Mary continued working for the Internal Revenue Service in Oklahoma City where she met James Edward Terry. They married in 1971. After James retired they built their dream home east of Fayetteville and enjoyed life until his passing in 1996. Mary enjoyed working for the IRS and later worked for the Washington County Health Department and at the Morning News. Later, she volunteered at KOFC Christian Radio and the VA Hospital, was a past member of the Zion-Oakland Home Extension Club and took classes at the university. She was a free-lance writer with some published short stores, music lyrics, poetry and one novel. She also wrote her opinion, free of charge, to Arkansas governors, US presidents and her representatives in Washington. Through all of life's adventures, ups and downs, good times and sorrowful times, she was a faithful follower of Jesus Christ. Mom took her responsibility as mother seriously and loved us unconditionally through our teen years, our young marriages and child-rearing years and offered support and sage advice as we became grandparents ourselves. Thank you Mom. Oh, how we will miss your friendship, smile and sharp wit. Mary was preceded in death by her parents; husband, James; sisters, Iona Jeane Strong and Betty Jo Peck; her beloved nephew, Steven Russell Peck. She is survived by her son, Alan and his wife Merry; and her daughter Kathleen and her husband Marion. Also surviving are her grandchildren, Andy and Steven Doss, Jared, Brant and Krista Murphy, James and John Couch, Crystal, Jessica and Allison, and at least 13 great-grandchildren. Pallbearers will be Andy Doss, Steven Doss, James Koons, Kenny Doss, John Couch and James Couch. A visitation will be held from 4-6 p.m. on Thursday, March 21, 2019, at Moore's Chapel Funeral Home in Fayetteville. A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, March 22, 2019, at Moore's Chapel Funeral Home with Kenneth Francis officiating. Interment to follow at Fairview Memorial Gardens in Fayetteville. Memorials may be made to Arkansas Baptist Children's Homes at To place an online tribute, visit

Published March 20, 2019