Mrs. Mary Ruth Arnold Sullivan Evans was born on August 29, 1933, to the late Harold Ulysses Sullivan and Fannie Mae Arnold. Mary departed this life on July 5, 2019.
Mary accepted Christ at an early age at Long Branch Baptist Church. During her life, Mary remained active at Long Branch Baptist Church, New Forksville Baptist Church, and New Jerusalem Baptist Church. She participated in numerous bible study classes and supported children’s and older adult activities. Mary enjoyed singing spiritual hymns around the house and studying the bible. Mary was a proud member of the Sterling High School class of 1951, and was very active in alumni activities. After graduating from high school, Mary attended North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 1955.
While attending NCA&T, Mary joined the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated and was both a Golden and Life member. As a member of the local Epsilon Tau Omega chapter of the AKA, she served as a former president of the Epsilon Tau Omega Foundation Board and also was a member of several sorority committees.
In 1955, Mary married her childhood sweetheart - Staff Sergeant Odell Evans. Being married to a military man gave her the opportunity to travel and experience things most could have only imagined. With her degree from NCA&T, Mary went on to teach in the Greenville County school district; primarily teaching special education at Blythe Elementary School, food services at Golden Strip Vocational, and adult night classes. Mary retired from the Greenville County School District after more than 20 years of service. Mary enjoyed travel, family gatherings, chats with friends, sewing, baking, and playing cards with her fellow members of the Excelsior and Evergreen Bridge Clubs. She also participated in The Minds Class, a senior adult academic ministry at Long Branch Baptist Church.
She was preceded in death by a son, Odell Evans, Jr.
Mary Ruth Arnold Sullivan Evans was devoted to her family and leaves to mourn her passing: her husband of 64 years, Retired Staff Sergeant Odell Evans of Greenville, South Carolina; a daughter, Cheryl Evans-McDonald (Samuel) of Ridgeway, South Carolina; and a son, Thomas Evans of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Left also to cherish fond memories are two grandchildren, Courtney Evans and Thomas Evans, II, of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida; two great-grandchildren, Lillie McDonald and Laila McDonald of Dumfries, Virginia; two sisters, Ada Mangrum and Cynthia Irby, of Greenville, South Carolina; sisters-in-law, Essie Evans and Helene Evans of Greenville, South Carolina; and a host of other relatives and friends.