Remembering Mary Fuqua

Mary Fuqua at our 90th  anniversary party

Newer members might not have had the pleasure of meeting Mary, but longtime members appreciate her many contributions to our branch as well as her sparkling personality.  She was a joy to be around.

If you have a memory of Mary that you would like to add to those below, send an email to newsletter editor, Dawn Rodrigues (

Some Memories of Mary

from Julie Mackaman—

We carpooled to at least one program and she hosted our June picnic down here one summer. She had a season pass to Prospect and often went skiing up there, alone, well into her 70s and maybe 80s.

I remember a story she told back in the days when we were sharing stories at our holiday parties. I don’t remember the theme, but her story was about the ritual of taking in the dock at the end of the summer at their lake place, something I could easily relate to.

from Dawn Rodrigues:

Mary was quite active in AAUW  and was the program chair for several years and did a terrific job. She was the speaker for one of the events at which she told us about the origins of the Tropical Conservancy (later known as One World Conservation Center) that she started on the Greenberg Reserve. She arranged for us to have Branch meetings there as well. She also opened her beautiful home in Williamstown for one of our June picnics.

from Gudrun Hutchins:

Mary was most active in AAUW a number of years ago before her husband became ill and required dialysis and constant care. She remained a member and did attend our 90th birthday party 6 years ago. We did not include photographs in the newsletters during earlier times when she was president of the Tropical Conservatory Group and gave one or two AAUW program on that.

Obituary in The Berkshire Eagle

Mary M. Fuqua, 85, of Williamstown, MA died peacefully at home in the early hours of December 27, 2022. Mary was born in Brattleboro, Vermont on August 10, 1937 to Ruth and Victor Morse.. Mary grew up in Brattleboro and spent summers on Spofford Lake in New Hampshire where she developed her lifelong love of the outdoors.

Mary graduated from Swarthmore College in 1959 and went on to pursue her doctorate at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. While there, she met and married Charles J Fuqua in 1961. After finishing their doctorates, Charlie and Mary moved to Hanover where they had the first of three children, Andrew, in 1965. In 1966, Charlie and Mary relocated to Williamstown, and twins David and Gillian were born in 1967.

Mary taught part time at both Williams and North Adams State College, now MCLA, before serving as NASC’s Dean of Graduate and Continuing Education until her retirement. An active member of the community, she served on the Williamstown Planning Board and North Adams Regional Hospital Board of Trustees. She also served on Massachusetts Hospital Association and American Hospital Association committees on healthcare governance.

Throughout her life Mary was an avid bread baker and gardener. After the children moved out, the house was rearranged to accommodate her collection of houseplants. This love of gardening led Mary to become a founding member of the One World Conservation Society, initially dedicated to the preservation of tropical begonias. Mary also belonged to the Bennington Garden Club and the Bennington chapter of the American Association of University Women.

Mary loved the outdoors and was an avid hiker. She summited every peak in North Berkshire, many several times. The summer she turned 75, she hiked every trail on Mt. Greylock. When she wasn’t hiking, she could be found tending one of her several gardens, cross country skiing, or herding various muchly beloved felines.

After Charlie’s death in 2019, Mary moved to Sweetwood of Williamstown where she made many new friends. The family thanks the residents and staff of the Sweetwood community for their kindness and support to both Mary and her family. The family also thanks the caregivers from At Home TLC for the wonderfully kind care they provided Mary in her final months.

Mary is survived by her three children, her granddaughter Maddie, her sister Cynthia, nieces and nephews, and her beloved cat Winslow who stayed by her side until the very end.

In keeping with Mary’s desire to help others instead of exchanging gifts during the holiday season, donations in Mary’s memory may be made to the Kurn Hattin Homes for Children. Donations may be made online at or by mail to Kurn Hattin Home, P.O. Box 127, Westminster, VT 05158.