Mary Austill Samford

Mary Austill Samford of Opelika, Alabama died September 9, 2018 at Westminster Village, Spanish Fort, Alabama after a courageous battle with Alzheimer’s.
She was preceded in death by her beloved husband of 64 years, Yetta G. Samford,Jr; son, Yetta G. Samford III; and brothers, Jere Austill,Jr and Evan Austill.
Mary was born October 21,1929 in Mobile, Alabama, daughter of Jere and Winifred Austill. At the age of 9, she was awarded the Carnegie Medal of Honor for saving her friend from drowning while swimming near her home in Spring Hill. She attended the University of Alabama and was a member of Kappa Delta sorority. Mary was a member of the National Society of Colonial Dames and a lifelong active member of First Baptist Church where she served in many capacities. She devoted her life to helping family and friends of all ages and from all walks of life. She never hesitated to welcome the stranger. Mary was known for her wonderful culinary skills and creative and artistic projects. She will also be remembered for her warm and generous hospitality to so many.
She is survived by daughters, Austill Samford Lott (Vic), Mobile,Alabama, Katie Samford Alford (Farra), Lexington, Kentucky; grandchildren Mary Austill Lott Flournoy (John), Walsh Lott Arendall (John), Katherine McRae Alford, Elizabeth Alford Rice (Evans), Farra McRae Alford,Jr (Lacey) and nine great-grandchildren; sister-in-law, Ruth Austill; devoted cousins Rose Ann and John Denson; and dear friend Kelley Pennington.
She was also blessed by the care and special friendship of Robert Hardnett, Bernice Thomas, and Catherine Torbert. The family would like to express their gratitude to Marsha Ogletree and her team of care-givers for their loyal and dedicated service.
Burial was held at Garden Hills Cemetery at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, September 11, 2018. The family received visitors in the Samford Parlor, First Baptist Church Opelika at 11:00 a.m. followed by a Celebration of Life in the Founders’ Chapel at 12:00 p.m. with Dr. Mike King. Reverend Mike Newman officiated.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Alzheimer’s Association (, First Baptist Church Opelika, 301 S 8th St., Opelika, Al 36801, or the charity of your choice.
Frederick-Dean Funeral Home directed.