Floral 02


Mary (Dowling) Byrne

August 5, 1923 ~ January 31, 2018 (age 94)

Mary Dowling Byrne of Atlanta, Georgia, died January 31, 2018 after gracing this world with her cheerful disposition and energy for over 94 years. She was born August 5, 1923 to William Edward Dowling and Margaret Elizabeth Lillard Dowling of Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, a place she visited regularly all her life and always referred to as "home." She had one sister, Ann Elizabeth Dowling, and was surrounded growing up by numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins. She graduated from City High School in Lawrenceburg, where she was the valedictorian. She attended Randolph-Macon Women's College in Lynchburg, Virginia, where she was a member of Delta Delta Delta sorority and was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. She graduated in 1945 and moved to Dallas, Texas to work for American Airlines, and later to teach at The Hockaday School. It was there that she met Granville Bland ("Dan") Byrne, originally from Brooksville, Kentucky, whom she married in 1950. They had one child, Granville Bland Byrne III, in 1952, and immediately thereafter returned to their home state, where they lived in Louisville until 1960. At that time, Dan was transferred by his employer, U. S. Plywood Corporation, to Atlanta, where they lived together until Dan's death in 1989. After a number of years as a full time mother and homemaker, Mary enrolled at Emory University, where she earned a Masters degree in Library Science. She began to work, part time at first, as the first librarian at Holy Innocents Episcopal School, a school run by the church her family attended. She remained at the school as librarian for over twenty years. After retirement, she maintained a busy schedule of family, friends, duplicate bridge, and at least one cruise a year for many years. She is survived by her son, Granville Bland Byrne III, daughter-in-law Monique Wise Byrne, both of Atlanta, two grandsons Peyton Smith Byrne of New York, NY and Fulton Buckner Byrne of Durham, NC, and a granddaughter Monique ("Nikki") Renee-Christienne Byrne of Atlanta.
The week before her wedding in 1950, she wrote her husband-to-be and asked about their honeymoon plans: "Do we have reservations along the way or will we drive till tired? Do you have a road map where we are going?" There were no reservations or map where they were going, but they found their way and spread much appreciated blessings to family and friends and others along the way. Now they rest.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in Mary's honor to Holy Innocents Episcopal School in Atlanta, Georgia, or to the First Christian Church in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky.
A memorial service will be held at Holy Innocents Episcopal Church, 805 Mount Vernon Highway, Atlanta, GA 30327 at 11:00 am Saturday February 10. There will be a reception immediately after at the Church. A graveside service will be held February 17, 2018 at Lawrenceburg Cemetery at 12 pm.

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