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Mary Carolyn Griffin Strother, age 83, of Cotton Plant, died October 3, 2023. She was born on her grandfather’s farm near Shaw, Mississippi on April 21, 1940, to Woodrow and Ruth Thompson Griffin. She graduated from Inverness High School in 1958. She was a long-time employee of Fowler Funeral Home in Brinkley. In a long career prior to that, she had worked for attorneys, Insurance Companies, and 25 years as Bookkeeper for an auto and radiator repair shop.
She moved to Cotton Plant in 1995, where she was employed for a time with Southern Aire Flying Service before going to work at Fowler Funeral Home. She was a member of Cotton Plant First Baptist Church. A former member of Brinkley Business and Professional Women’s Organization, she was chosen as their Woman of the Year for 2002.
Mary wrote short stories for the children in the family, and poetry which she occasionally shared with others. In 2001, she was “Poet of the Year” by the National Poetry Society and invited to a conference in Las Vegas, where she was to receive an award. She chose not to go due to her dislike of traveling and crowds. Her lifetime travels included only four trips, one each to Washington DC, New York City, Las Vegas, and New Orleans. Her writing had been published in “Good Old Days” Magazine and “The Progressive Farmer.” She had also written a column for the Chicot Spectator for a short while.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Woodrow and Ruth Griffin; sister, Shirley Griffin Rippee; nephew, Chris Griffin and niece, Stephanie Griffin.
Mary is survived by her son, Dean Strother of Cotton Plant; one granddaughter, Megan Strother Martin of Dewitt; a brother, Joe Griffin and wife Debbie of Cotton Plant; two nephews, Rusty Rippee and Scott Rippee; two nieces, Stephanie Griffin and Amanda Griffin Reed; great and great-great-nieces and nephews; and brother-in-law, Billy Rippee of Lake Village.
Memorial Services will be announced later, at Cotton Plant First Baptist Church.
Memorials may be made to Disabled American Veterans or to any Animal Rescue Organization.
Arrangements by Smith Westbrook Funeral Home, 404 W Dewitt Henry, Beebe, Arkansas.
To view the online registry, www.smithfamilycares.com/westbrook