Mary Lou Burch

March 13, 2018

Mary Lou Burch, 103, died peacefully on March 13, 2018 at The Hospice Center of the Carolina Foothills. She was fully engaged with life all her many years.


Mary Lou, as she was known, was born September 21,1914 to George and Alace (Brown) Mitze of Cedar Falls, Iowa. She was a bright student and leader in school.  She studied Education at the University of Northern Iowa and received her Masters in Elizabethan literature at the University of Iowa.


Mary Lou was a classically trained pianist who played every day of her life. She was also a passionate gardener with an encyclopedic knowledge of plants and a writer who self-published several books on gardening. Her home was always surrounded by beautiful plantings and walking paths. Mary Lou taught her children and grandchildren to love and appreciate nature, from the woods outside her home in Massachusetts to the rocky coast of Maine.


On June 3, 1939, she married Robert L. Burch, who predeceased her in 1994. They had four children who survive them: Barbara Callahan and her husband Robert Callahan of Woodstock NY, Carol Booth and her husband Bill Faia of Dallas TX, Maui, HI and Polson, MT , Sue Wyckoff of Buffalo MN and Robert Hayes Burch,  and his wife Sally Burch of Westford, MA. She is also survived by seven grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Her caretaker, Lydia Mullet, was a great help to her in her last years, providing care, friendship and companionship that allowed Mary Lou to stay in her home until her passing.


The family spent many years in the Boston area where Mary Lou was a dedicated homemaker and a creative spirit. 


Mary Lou and her husband retired to Landrum, SC in 1980. Mary Lou engaged in the community as always, joining the Beautification Committee, the Cemetery Association, the Landrum Library Association, and staying involved with the Landrum Presbyterian Church. Throughout her many years, she maintained a keen interest in her children and their spouses, as well as her grandchildren and great grandchildren.  She was an inspiration to all who knew her and she will be greatly missed.


A memorial service will be held at the Landrum Presbyterian Church at 11:00 on Sat. Mar. 24 with a luncheon to follow. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Mary Lou Burch Fund at Landrum Presbyterian Church, or to Hospice of the Carolina Foothills.  

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