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Mary Ann (Brinson) Linder
November 7, 1934 ~ December 18, 2023 (age 89) 89 Years Old
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Mary Ann Linder. After a life of generous service, Mary Ann Linder slipped away in a peaceful slumber on December 18, 2023. Her final hours were spent with her sons Harry Kyle and Daniel, celebrating Advent with readings, prayers, and songs.
Mary Ann was born in Houston, Texas on November 7, 1934 to Floyd and Dorothy Brinson, who taught her to walk in the light of Christ and share that light with others. She graduated with honors from Lamar High School in Houston, and then from Baylor University, honing her naturally strong communication skills in both writing and public speaking. She would go on to earn graduate degrees from Creighton University, Kearney State, and Andover Newton Theological Seminary (Yale) and spent a sabbatical year at Boston University’s School of Theology.
Mary Ann published broadly (being listed in Who’s Who in American Prose and Poetry), including articles, poetry, and several books that drew heavily from her faith and lessons from motherhood.
Blessed with a beautiful soprano voice that filled every church she attended, she was always ready with a song on her lips if not in her heart. Through her music, study of scriptures, counseling, and theology, she dedicated herself to serving others through the Methodist ministry.
She met her first husband, Harry Bohrs, while they were students at Baylor University. They moved to Greenwich Village in the 1950’s, then to Hightstown, New Jersey where they raised their boys, sharing her faith along with her love of baseball and learning to appreciate fishing and camping.
Mary Ann later married Lyle Linder, and his daughter Leslie came into her life. The two enjoyed 41 years of marriage, traveling the world and ministering together. A particular passion was building homes near the Mexican border through Volunteers in Mission, in which they participated for several years and through which they sponsored several children. When Daniel took his junior year in Japan, Mary Ann decided to open their home to a Japanese exchange student. They hosted four students over the years, forming life-long bonds with Kurami, Ikuko, Kayoko and Takuya leading to two trips to Japan to deepen ties between families.
Mary Ann went from being an Assistant Editor at McGraw-Hill in a NYC high-rise, to living in Atlanta while Lyle attended divinity school at Emory University, to being the Executive Director of the Crossroads Social Service Center in the plains of Hastings, Nebraska, to attending Andover Newton in Newton, MA, to living in Franklin, NY and serving as Pastor to several area churches. Her final move was to Boston after Lyle’s death in 2017 to be near her sons.
Mary Ann deeply loved and valued her family, taking special pride in the accomplishments of her grandchildren. She cared greatly for those around her, and rejoiced in music, reading, writing, and the church. She took delight in reading mysteries and indulging in word games, particularly very competitive Scrabble tournaments when
Mary Ann was a remarkable woman who was always half a step ahead of her time, and smart as a whip. She exemplified “You can take the girl out of Texas, but you can’t take the Texas out of the girl”.
Her generosity of spirit and the songs from her soul will be missed by her family and the many people she touched, including those who cared for her in her final years at Presentation Rehab Center in Brighton. We are grateful for their kind attentiveness. She leaves her children Harry Kyle Bohrs (Anne Turner), Daniel Bohrs, and Leslie Linder, and her grandchildren Katharine and Nathaniel Bohrs.
A funeral service will be held in the Brown & Hickey Funeral Home 36 Trapelo Road Belmont on Saturday Jan. 27th at 12:30 PM.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to UMCOR, United Methodist Committee on Relief: umcmission.org/UMCOR/ Thank you!