The Austin College community celebrates the life of retiree Cathy Stewart who died on September 10, 2022. She worked as an administrative assistant in Science and Math from 1972 until her retirement in June 2002. When the IDEA Center was built, the office outside the Dean of Sciences Office was named the Mary Catherine Stewart Administrative Office in her honor.
Cathy’s children are Austin College graduates: Tom ’84 and Leighann ’79. Cathy’s oldest granddaughter, Emileigh Stewart Hubbard, is a 2008 graduate. She and her husband, Garrett, director of Information Technology at the College, hope their two sons continue their great-grandmother’s legacy at the College.
The family obituary follows:
Mary Catherine (Cathy) Sheppard Stewart died in her sleep on September 10.
Born on July 10, 1934, to the late Garrie and Mary Donoho Shepphard, she was delivered by her grandfather in the family home on Cherry Street.
She later moved back to Cherry Street in 1969 with her then-husband – the late Jerry T. Stewart – and her two children, Leighann and Thomas. She and Jerry married in 1957. Though they later divorced, they remained close until he died in 2001.
Cathy graduated from Sherman High School and Grayson County College and attended classes at Austin College. She began working at Austin College in 1972, where she was the long-time administrative assistant for the Math and Science Department. Her hard work ensured both her children received a college education.
She had a devout faith as a member of the Parkview Church of Christ. After she retired, she volunteered at the church when she wasn’t tending to her yard or hosting grandchildren.
To her five grandchildren—Emileigh, Trent, Haleigh, Zachary, and Vivian—and her two great-grandchildren—Clark and Luke—she was known as Grams. She delighted in her grandchildren not by spoiling but by being active, interested, and involved in their lives.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her sister Jean and brother Don. Having been a caregiver to her parents late in their lives and her older brother, she lived up to the Sheppard namesake.
She is survived by her children, her son-in-law “big” Jack – who she loved as her own— grandchildren, great-children, numerous nieces and nephews, and her sister-in-law Rita Stewart Arrington. Cindy Singleton is a very special niece who helped care for Cathy as she struggled with dementia.
The family is also grateful to the caregivers of Timber Rock House for putting a smile back on Cathy’s face in the last few months.
Cathy worked hard. She was naturally funny—usually without intending to be. She was thrifty. She was a woman of faith and service. Her family and friends will miss her.