April 15, 1958 - March 15, 2020
ATLANTA, GA - Mary Barnes, age 61, transitioned to be with her Lord and reunited with loved ones who went before her, when she passed away on Sunday, March 15, 2020 in the comfort of her sister and brother-in-law’s home with her family by her side. Born in Utica on April 15, 1958, Mary was the 6th child of the late R.T. and Mamie S. (March) Barnes. Raised and educated locally, she was a graduate of Utica Free Academy. She was married to Herman “Dennis” Neale. In 1994, Mary relocated her family to Georgia to provide a better life for her children. She trained as a Cosmetologist tending to many people’s hair needs with great-detail. She worked in Utica Public Schools and held several positions in Atlanta. An outgoing, optimistic person, Mary lived life to the fullest. Her heart and home were always open... the perspective from which she lived her life. She welcomed family and friends, always thinking about their needs and honoring their special days with a unique text only Mary could send! She enjoyed the smiles on the faces of her loved ones, and although she was a playful person, as a mother, she played no games. She meant what she said and said what she meant. She held true to her values of self-respect and self-discipline. As a sister, she gave her siblings her time and good intentions. Every summer, she came back to Utica with her grandchildren to spend precious time with all. Many knew that Mary and Eva had a special bond, and boy did they love to shop and catch up on the daily details of their lives. Her grandchildren affectionately knew her as “Mema”. She was the host of many great times; she loved them to be in her surroundings, and as well as being a great protector, she was the most awesome teacher of life’s lessons. She poured her heart and soul into her grandchildren and because of them, her life was more fulfilled. She taught them to dream big and believe that they could have whatever their hearts desired. She was a natural caretaker blessed with gentle concern and compassion. And that could be proclaimed by all of her family during their time of need. Holidays were paramount. She implemented the Annual Christmas Eve family gatherings, her home was generally the meeting place and she was the head chef for the celebrations. Her banana pudding, cakes, and pies were the harvest of the meal; Mary often preferred to eat dessert and skip the main course. She loved the warm weather in the south and when she visited Utica, she thought the weather was rarely warm enough. When she relocated her family to Georgia, her goal was to allow her children to expand their horizons and encourage them to live up to their God-given potential that she praised. She made it easy for them to succeed. She had a close bond with her children that she nurtured in a way only a mother could. Last year her son returned to Atlanta to spend some much-needed time with her, unbeknownst to him it would be his last happy moments with her. He got his strength and compassion from her and she was his number one cheerleader when no one else was. She encouraged him when he needed it, reminding him to trust God and to have absolute faith. She had a special bond with her daughter that spanned throughout the years through laughter, worry, smiles, and tears. A sense of trust that could not be broken and a depth of love sometimes unspoken. As a member of Saint Matthew’s Temple Church of God in Christ, she put her beliefs into action by her many good deeds. She gravitated to young people, and when she was called upon to help, she could be counted upon to act with compassion. She was a “leader-maker”… she made many dreams come true for the parish. Mary is survived by her children, Millicent “Milly” Lamons; the memory of her son-in-law, Terrance Lamons who passed away on October 28, 2018; her son, Alphonso D. Barnes; her husband, “Dennis”; beloved grandchildren, Damarius, Jaylah and Tiannah; Saniya, Dionna, Dion, Diondre, and Levi. She also leaves three sisters and five brothers, Missionary Eva (Rev. J.L.) Griffin, Gussie Curry, Betty Barnes, Minnie (Holloway) Smith; Will (Maureen) Barnes, Harold (Janie) Barnes, Eugene (Serena) Barnes, Robert (Trunell) Barnes, Norman Barnes; a host of nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles and a multitude of wonderful friendships that blessed her life throughout the years. She was predeceased by her nephew, Dwight Maddox. The family extends their appreciation to the medical staff of MVHS at St. Luke’s Campus, Crouse Hospital, MVHS at Faxton Rehabilitation, Utica Rehabilitation and Nursing Center and Hospice and Palliative Care. The family remains grateful to the members of the community who prayed for her, especially the Intercession team at St. Matthew’s Temple. Due to current health concerns and in keeping with federal and state regulations, services will be held privately. A Memorial celebration of Mary’s life will be held at a future date and time to be announced. Because there are no public services at this time, the family asks that you please consider donations to Hospice & Palliative Care, Inc., 4277 Middle Settlement Rd., New Hartford, NY 13413 or online at https://hospicecareinc.org. During this time of social distancing that we are all experiencing, please take a moment to connect with Mary’s family through the “Memories” section of her obituary on this website. Our prayers go out to all as a sign of our continued support.
ATLANTA, GA - Mary Barnes, age 61, transitioned to be with her Lord and reunited with loved ones who went before her, when she passed away on Sunday, March 15, 2020 in the comfort of her sister and brother-in-law’s home with her family... View Obituary & Service Information
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