Mary Elizabeth Helvey Mitchell

Mary E. Mitchell

Mary Mitchell at her 99th birthday party.

Mary Elizabeth Helvey Mitchell died January 30, 2008 at Wellmont Regional Medical Center, Bristol, TN. The daughter of Rev. John Watson Helvey and Ella Maude Thomas Helvey, she was born on September 18, 1908, at the Calvin V. Thomas residence in Grant, Grayson County, VA.

Mary's husband of 65 years, J. T. W. “Trubie” Mitchell, preceded her in death October 14, 2001. She is survived by a daughter, Joan Elizabeth Mitchell Keith of Bristol, TN, two sons John Esca Mitchell of Littleton, CO and Henry Helvey Mitchell of Chatham, VA, brother Paul Glen Helvey of Lebanon, VA, seven grandchildren and ten great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by two brothers John Watson Helvey, Jr., of Kingsport, TN and Thomas Miller Helvey of Johnson City, TN.

Mary was raised at Emory, VA. A graduate of Meadowview High School, she received an art diploma under Louisa Nurse from Martha Washington College and graduated summa cum laude from Emory and Henry College. She also attended Art Institute of Chicago summer classes with Francis Chapin.

Mary taught elementary classes at Hollybrook School and at Davis School in Bland County, VA and at Konnarock in Washington County, VA.

She married James Trubie Wain Mitchell, son of Esca Mitchell and Minnie Flora Belle Miller of Bland County, VA in 1936. Trubie taught at Bethel School in Washington County, Ceres School in Bland County during which time Mary pursued her art interests and cared for her children. They finally settled in the Spring Garden Community, Pittsylvania County, VA.

She presented works in many exhibitions in Danville, VA as well as other regional shows and competitions. She worked in oil, watercolor, pencil, lithograph, acrylic, and pastel and did landscapes, still life, and portraits, a number of which were commissioned. Her works hang in many homes throughout the region, as well as at Emory and Henry College, her alma mater.

In 1979, Mary and Trubie moved to a home in Bristol. In 1999, they took up residence at Outlook Pointe, now Broadmore Assisted Living, where Mary lived until her death.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday at 6 pm in the Weaver Funeral Home Chapel, 630 Locust St. Bristol, TN. Committal services will be on Sunday at 2 pm at the Tri-Cities Memory Gardens Mausoleum. The family will receive friends on Saturday from 4-6 pm at Weaver Funeral Home prior to the service. In lieu of flowers contributions may be sent to the scholarship fund at Emory and Henry College, P.O. Box 950 Emory, VA 24327 or to the Habitat for Humanity fund of Central Presbyterian Church at 301 Euclid Avenue, Bristol, VA 24201.


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