Mary Ethel Mills, age 77, was surrounded by her loved ones, when she went to be with the Lord on October 16, 2019 at Mercy Hospital in Rogers, Arkansas. She was born to Ernest and Charlene Heldermon on November 23rd, 1941 in Hinton, Oklahoma. Mary had two siblings; Nancy Johnson of Lebanon, Missouri and the late John Heldermon. The family moved to Phoenix, Arizona when she was 12 years old, and she graduated from high school there. Mary was always involved with the youth group of her church and theater club. She also loved going to their summer home and lifeguarding at the Pine Top Country Club. Following graduation, she attended cosmetology school and became a hair stylist at Gold Water’s Salon in Phoenix. From there, she moved back to Oklahoma, where she met Bobby Don Mills and they were married on March 10, 1962. After a short stay in Buena Vista, Colorado, where she managed a hair salon, they returned to Oklahoma and worked the family farm. Their first 3 children were born there, Gai, Kai, and Lance. In 1971, life took them to Lebanon, Missouri where they became involved in the day to day business of operating a family owned dairy farm and had their fourth child, Stashi. Eventually, they ended up at a farm in Louisburg, Missouri. Mary worked for the Social Security Administration for over 30 years and retired in 2003. Retirement brought her and Bob to Bella Vista, Arkansas.
Mary was a creative craftsman, which she learned from her father. This talent was used for making, creating and building miniature dollhouses, restoring trunks and furniture and creating one of a kind masterpieces. She has donated multiple dollhouses to Children’s charities and had antique booths in several locations in the Bentonville area. Mary will always be remembered as a classy lady who would not leave the house without her nails, hair and makeup done and being dressed to perfection. Like her mother, she was known for making the best homemade pies and she would never let you leave her home hungry.
Mary loved her family, as it was the most important part of her life. She is survived by her husband Bob of 57 years, a son and three daughters; Gai Hale and her husband Reggie of Bentonville, Arkansas; Kai Stancer and her husband Gregg of Ozark, Missouri; Lance Mills and his wife Leigh of Mustang, Oklahoma; Stashi Burtin and her husband Billy of Marshfield, Missouri. She is also survived by 11 grandchildren; Chase Hale and wife Jeanne, Cali Sharp and husband Ty, Jacob Stancer, Colby Hale and his wife Lacee, Hayden Stancer, Garrett Stancer and his wife Kaitlyn, Carl Endorf, Tyler Mills, Hannah Endorf, Carson Mills and Jackson Mills; 6 great grandchildren ; Addilyn, Easton, Ellington, Atleigh, Laney Kate, and Isabella; and their precious dog Boomer. She is also survived by her sister, Nancy, and a large number of nieces, and nephews; as well as a host of other relatives and friends.
Mary was a strong woman of faith in Christ and her life was a pure example of unconditional love to others. She was a giving, loving lady, with a servant’s heart and a gentle spirit, a loving wife, sister, aunt, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and friend. Although her journey here has ended, she has begun her eternal life in heaven, and we will look forward to seeing her again.
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:34
Memorial Service: First Baptist Church, Saturday, 2:00 PM, October 26, 2019, Hinton, OK
Officiating: Rev. Keith Gillham
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