Obituary for Mary Burnett Sims

Published 11:58 am Friday, August 14, 2020

Mary Burnett Sims, 93, died Wednesday, August 12, 2020.  Mary was born December 20, 1926, to Florence and Jess Burnett in Charleston, Miss. After graduating from Charleston High School, she attended Belhaven College her freshman year and transferred to University of Mississippi as a sophomore. At Ole Miss she joined Delta Gamma Fraternity and served as pledge trainer and rush chairman.  In 1948, she received a Bachelors of Business Administration and in 1971 earned a Masters in Business Education.

On June 26, 1949, Mary married her childhood sweetheart, Denton Sims. They were married fifty-eight years. After living in Charleston, Corinth, and Columbus, Mary, Denton and girls moved to Oxford in 1967.

Mary was a lifelong Presbyterian, and an active member of First Presbyterian Oxford for 53 years. Teaching Sunday school, Circle chairman, President of the Women of the church, and chairman of the Christmas Store are some of the ways Mary served faithfully.

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In 1983, Mary retired from teaching after thirty years.  During most of her teaching career she taught high school business classes.  Her students in Oxford often thanked her for the many disciplines they learned that enabled them to be successful in a career or a business. In 1973, the Mississippi Business Education Association honored Mary as Business Teacher of the year. She was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma, Delta Pi Epsilon, Phi Kappa Phi and Delta Kappa Phi.

She served Delta Gamma as chapter advisor and Treasurer of House Corporation for many years. The national Delta Gamma President honored her with the Cable Award for outstanding service in 1977.

Oxford Woman’s Forum was another organization she enjoyed for many years and was a past president. Mary was a member of many bridge clubs, loved following the Ole Miss Rebels, and was a loyal friend to many. Family reunions were organized by her for decades. She was a great cook and loved bringing food to friends in need, especially her delicious pound cake.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Denton Sims; parents, Florence and Jess Burnett, Sr.; twin brother, Jess Burnett, Jr., brothers, John and Joe Burnett; and son-in-law, Jim Jackson.

Surviving Mary are her two daughters, Robbie Schuchard (Charlie), of Little Rock, Ark., and Laura Jackson, of Oxford; four grandchildren, Scott Schuchard (Michelle), of Little Rock; Mary Margaret Schuchard Rogers (Tyler), of Signal Mountain, Tenn., Mary Elizabeth Jackson, of Memphis, Tenn., and Sims Jackson, of Jackson, Tenn.; six great grandchildren, Eleanor, Weston and Mary Diana Schuchard, Callum, David, and Beckett Rogers; one sister-in-law, Martha Burnett, of Oxford; a godson, Eddie Vause, of Oxford; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

The family would like to thank Rosie Hawkins of Abbeville and the staffs at Elmcroft and Encompass Hospice for the gracious care provided to Mary.

A graveside service will be at Charleston Cemetery on Saturday, August 15, 2020, at 4 p.m. “In accordance with guidelines issued by the State of Mississippi, social distancing guidelines will be followed and face coverings should be worn. If you or someone living with you is experiencing fever, cough, or other symptoms related to COVID 19, have tested positive for COVID 19 or are awaiting test results for COVID 19, we kindly ask that you do not attend.”

Memorials may be made to First Presbyterian Church, 924 Van Buren Ave., Oxford, MS 38655.

For additional information or to leave an online condolence, please call 662.234.7971 or visit