Mary Hines Sicilio
February 17, 1921-June 9, 2008
Mary Hines Sicilio passed from life to eternal life at her home in
College Station, Texas on June 9, 2008.
Born to Atsie and Robert Lee Hines in Simsboro, Louisiana, on
February 17, 1921, Mama grew up on the family cotton farm. Her mother
taught her and other sharecroppers’ children in a one room schoolhouse.
Mama attended teacher college, Louisiana State Normal School in
Nachitoches, and received her degree in education from Louisiana Tech
Mama met Papa at when he was stationed at Barksdale Army Air Force
Base during World War II. When she was teaching third graders at
Simsboro, Louisiana, she was notified that he, a B-17 navigator on his
first mission, was shot down over Vienna and was Missing in Action.
After evading capture by the Nazis for seventy days, he returned to the
United States, and they were married two days later.
In addition to loving Papa, family, and teaching children, Mama first
loved God. Papa, born in Italy, had been raised in the Catholic Church.
When he returned from being M.I.A., there were inadequate gas rations
for the priest to travel to marry them. Thus, they were married by Mama’s
Methodist preacher. Subsequently, Papa joined the Methodist Church.
She raised her family throughout Louisiana, Tennessee, Georgia,
and Texas as Papa was pursuing studies in Chemistry at Centenary and
Vanderbilt and faculty appointments in Chemistry at Georgia Tech and
Texas A-M. To support educational programs for Aggies, a former
student, Dr. Bill Howell, other former students, faculty, friends, and
family established a Presidential Endowed Scholarship in Chemistry at
Texas A-M University.
In reviewing her Bible, Mama had noted, from Ephesians 4, the various
callings of Christians, and wrote “My special ability was to teach Texas
children.” Indeed, Mama taught elementary students in Louisiana,
Tennessee, and Texas, and completed the last twenty years of her
teaching career as an outstanding third grade teacher at College Hills
Elementary in College Station.
Mama and Papa joined A-M Methodist Church one week after they
moved to the A-M College of Texas in 1961. They remained devoted
members until their deaths. Lovers of Christian music, Mama and Papa
donated the Steinway grand piano to the historic gothic sanctuary. The
sanctuary American flag is donated by the Sicilio family to the memory
of Fred Sicilio, Earl Rudder, and all who love God and country. The
sanctuary Christian flag is similarly donated in memory of Mary Sicilio,
Margaret Rudder, and all who love God and family.
Always the teacher, Mama donated her body for medical education and
research to the Texas A-M Health Science Center College of Medicine.
Mama was preceded in death by her mother, sisters, brothers and Papa.
Mama is survived by her son, Lee, and wife, Jan, of Fort Worth; daughter,
Rebecca Sicilio Lewis, and husband, Neeley, of College Station,
grandson, Stuart Barron Lewis, and wife, Autumn, great-grandchildren,
Grace Rebecca and Graham Barron, of Conroe, granddaughter, Rachel
Ruth Moore, and husband, Casey, great-grandchildren, Lauren Elizabeth
and Luke Davis, of College Station; daughter, Mimi Sicilio, and husband,
Joseph Kluszcynski; son, Mark, and wife, Lisa, grandchildren Sarah
Elizabeth, Mark Stephen, Matthew Lee, and Rachel Anne; numerous
other relatives including great-niece, Deena Hardin and family, of College
Station; and many former students and friends.
The family thanks Choice Home Care, Mary Ann Braden, and Mama’s
beloved physician, David Hackethorn, M.D., for their excellent and
A memorial service celebrating her life, death, and resurrection will be
held at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, June 11, at A-M United Methodist
Church. One may leave condolences at www.callawayjones.com.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Methodist Children’s
Home in Waco, Texas, A-M United Methodist Church, or the charity of
Mary Hines Sicilio