Mary Elinor Huyett, 83, Charles Town, died Friday, Aug. 30, 2013, at Greenfield Senior Living, Berryville, Va.
She was born Feb. 21, 1930, in Milton, W.Va. She was a daughter of the late James Davis Reese and Mary Ruth Shy Reese.
Mary Elinor graduated from Milton High School where she served as class valedictorian. While a teenager, she played the organ for the Asbury United Methodist Church in Milton, a small town in Cabell County of which she was very proud.
She attended Marshall University majoring in music, focusing on piano and vocals. Graduating with honors including several Chopin awards and playing all instruments, she frequently performed as a guest soloist with Huntington Symphony Orchestra. Immediately upon graduation from college, Mary Elinor Reese came to Jefferson County as a music supervisor and teacher to hundreds of fortunate children, during which time she met her first husband and father of her children, A.D. Peters, principal of Summit Point Elementary School at the time. She also taught in the vocal music department at Shepherd College. For over 25 years, Mary Elinor directed the choir of the Asbury Methodist Church in Charles Town. She produced and directed many benefit programs for the Old Opera House, including, "It's A Grand Night for Singing" and many Christmas programs one of which included her special friend, the former U.S. Senator Robert Byrd. She also portrayed"Nettie" in the production of Carousel. A generous community minded individual, she was named Jefferson County Citizen of the Year by the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce. Mary Elinor served on the boards of the Old Opera House, the Millbrook Chamber Orchestra and the Shepherd College Board of Advisors. She was a campaign chairman and president of the United Way of Jefferson County and was a recipient of the VanRyzin Award. She was an avid floral designer, sharing her talent and time with many. She was a former president and member of the Dolly Madison Garden Club; she was also a member of the WV State Garden Club and the Jefferson County Garden Club. She was a member of the Friday Book Club, and she enjoyed playing tennis and water coloring.
She is survived by Jack R. Huyett, her husband of seven years and friend of 60 years, at home; daughter, Jennifer Peters Kohlhepp and husband Ray, Charles Town, grandsons, James Parker Kohlhepp and Justin O'Hara Kohlhepp; and a very special niece, Anne Coyle Portey.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her first husband, A.D. Peters; second husband, Robert Anderson; son, James Parker Peters; and brother Robert Davis Reese.
Everyone is invited to attend a graveside service today at 11 a.m., at the Edge Hill Cemetery, Charles Town, with Pastor Richard Neal officiating.
A reception will be held following the service at 703 South Samuel Street, Charles Town.
Arrangements are being made by The Melvin T. Strider Colonial Funeral Home, Charles Town.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Jefferson County Animal Welfare Society, P.O. Box 147, Charles Town, WV 25414; the James Parker Peters Scholarship Fund of the Asbury United Methodist Church, 110 West North Street, Charles Town, WV 25414; Hospice of the Panhandle, 122 Waverly Court, Martinsburg, WV 25403; and Blue Ridge Hospice, 333 West Cork Street, Winchester, VA 22601.
Please visit www.mtstrider.com to view her obituary and sign her online guestbook.