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Mary Benz McDowell
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Birth: Aug. 2, 1919
Jackson County
Illinois, USA
Death: Feb. 3, 2006
Forest City
Rutherford County
North Carolina, USA

Mary Benz McDowell, 86, passed peacefully Friday, Feb. 3, 2006, in Forest City, N.C., after a very brief decline in health with her loving daughters by her side. Born in Murphysboro, Ill., she was the daughter of the late William Henry Benz and Minnie Bertha Benz Perry, and step daughter of the late Joseph (Pop) Minton Perry. A graduate of Cleveland High School in St. Louis, Mo., she continued her education at Universidad De La Habana, Cuba. She served proudly in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1943 to 1948, including as executive officer of Women Marines under Capt. Barbara Bishop at Quantico, Va., attaining the rank of 1st Lieutenant. She was married for 54 years to the late Lt. Col. Dean Noyes McDowell, USMC. She was a homemaker and co-owner/ operator with her husband of Merrimac Game Farm and Hunting Preserve in Nokesville, Va. She was a member of Asbury United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 6, Nokesville, VA 20182-006 and attended St. Frances Episcopal Church in Rutherfordton, N.C. In addition to her husband and parents, she was preceded by her sons, Dean Noyes McDowell Jr. and Ralph Walker McDowell II, and by five siblings. Left to cherish her memory are daughter Gail McDowell and her husband Jon Grunbaum and their daughter Caitlin of Happy Camp, Calif.; daughter Anne Schafer and her husband Gary and their children Dean, Mary, Helen and David of Rutherfordton, N.C.; Ralph's children, Melanie McDowell of Kingston, Pa., and Charles McDowell of Arlington, Va.; sister Claribel Rose Perry Wilson of Lakeland, Fla.; along with many nieces, nephews and friends. A celebration of life and burial with military honors will be at a later date at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. The family may be reached at 415 Brooks Lake Road, Rutherfordton, N.C. 28139 Memorial contributions can be made to Hospice of Rutherford County, P.O. Box 336, Forest City, N.C. 28043 or the Prince William Conservation Alliance, P.O. Box 6351, Woodbridge, VA 22195. Sign the guestbook at or

Obituary, Potomac News, February 5, 2006. 
Family links: 
  Dean Noyes McDowell (1920 - 2001)
  Ralph Walker McDowell (1947 - 2004)*
*Calculated relationship
Arlington National Cemetery
Arlington County
Virginia, USA
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Garver Graver
Record added: Mar 01, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 13492208
Mary <i>Benz</i> McDowell
Added by: Janet
Mary <i>Benz</i> McDowell
Cemetery Photo
Added by: James Seidelman
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