Mary Beth Hagood, 78, passed away peacefully at her home Monday August 30, 2021 with a view out her window of her beautiful garden and hummingbirds feeding on her hummingbird feeders; her loving husband Jim by her side.
Mary Beth was born in Nacogdoches on April 26, 1943, to Burton Fitch and Attye (Sledge) Fitch. She grew up in Livingston, the oldest of the three vivacious Fitch sisters. She played clarinet in the Livingston High School Marching Band, helped at her family’s grocery store Fitch Grocery, and was a fierce tennis player. She earned a Bachelor and a Master of Arts at Stephen F. Austin State University and went on to teach English throughout East Texas before settling in Nacogdoches and becoming the head of the English department at Nacogdoches High School, where she taught for over 25 years. Her proudest professional accomplishments were watching her students excel…many of those students staying in touch with her well after graduation.
Mary Beth and James “Jim” Hagood met while students at SFA and married in 1966. Their 56 years of marriage were full of love, laughter and countless adventures. She intensely loved Jim but was not above throwing a tomato at his head when he was driving her crazy. They both loved finding any excuse to fill their beautiful home with friends and family. They were the consummate hosts grilling steaks, handing out beer and serving Mary Beth’s amazing desserts (her apple pie one of her specialties).
Mary Beth was a devoted mother to her two children Jed Hagood and Julia (Hagood) Yates, instilling in them a strong work ethic, love of gardening, generosity towards others and a sharp sense of humor. Among her children’s favorite memories of their mother are the many Christmas mornings spent with her...Mary Beth loved Christmas and was a skilled gift giver and “stocking stuffer”!
Mary Beth was a passionate, expert gardener and her yard was featured in “Texas Gardener” magazine. Her garden was a true labor of love and the many years of planning, working and tending showed in the beauty of the flowers, plants and trees that thrived there. Her favorite way to unwind was to sit among her plants, enjoying all that was around her, including the wildlife.
Mary Beth was so many things. She could quote lines of Shakespeare or Beowulf on a dare. She was whip-smart but humble about it. She loved dogs, scrapbooking, British literature, travel and her church. She took great pleasure in spoiling her grandson, Jackson. She had impeccable manners and took pride in her home. She appreciated a good joke and the occasional margarita or glass of chardonnay. She was an obsessive collector of Santas. She had a beautiful, uproarious laugh. She was an excellent listener, loving sister, and devoted friend. She was kind and generous. We are all better for knowing her. She will be dearly missed but she is now in Heaven with her beloved mother Attye.
Mary Beth is survived by her loving husband Jim Hagood, son Jed Hagood and wife, Michelle, daughter Julia Yates and husband Aaron; grandson Jackson Hagood; sisters Effie Hill and husband, Royce Hill, and Ann Gutierrez. Mary Beth is preceded in death by her parents Burton and Attye Fitch.
A service for Mary Beth will be held at the First United Methodist Church in Nacogdoches on Sunday, September 5 at 2:00 pm with Nathan Hodge and Lorraine Brown officiating. Visitation will be held from 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm prior to the service. Interment will be held at 4:30 pm at Old Shiloh Cemetery in Mt. Enterprise. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to SFA Gardens - Mary Beth Hagood Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 13000, Nacogdoches, TX 75962
Pallbearers for the service will be Sammy Almany, Scott Deppe, Ronnie Ferguson, Neil Grant, Jackson Hagood, Bob Parsons, Val Rose, and Johnnie Walker.
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