Wrisley Funeral Home
90 Sugarloaf Street, South Deerfield, MA 01373
Office: 413-665-4046             Fax: 413-665-0975

Mary Louise Belden Williams

A memorial service will be held Monday, December 26th at 2:00Pm at the Hatfield Congregational Church.

Mary Louise Belden Williams passed away on November 25, 2016, one day before her 84th birthday.


Born in 1932, Mary grew up as the oldest daughter in one of Hatfield’s farming families. As a child, she enjoyed travelling with her father on farm business, playing the piano, playing basketball, and writing for school publications. She graduated second in her class from Smith Academy and went on to receive a BA in Sociology from Colby College in Maine.


As a single woman, Mary travelled frequently with friends and began a career as a teacher for the Clarke School for the Deaf in Northampton. She married Gordon Williams in 1959. While raising four children, she continued her work outside the home, eventually earning a Master’s degree in Deaf Education from Smith College. In addition, after 10 generations of being passed father to son, Mary was the first woman to inherit Belden Farm. She and Gordon worked and lived on the land for 55 years before his passing in 2014.


Mary was an active part of the Hatfield community who never backed down when she thought something was right. She served for many years on the School Committee, loved hosting Bridge Club, and was a dedicated fan of Smith Academy sports. She was a lifelong member of the First Congregational Church, where she especially enjoyed playing the organ and participating in the Handbell Choir.


Known for her humor and wit, Mary could fool anyone on April Fool’s Day. She was the first one to put shorts on in the spring and the last to take them off in the fall. She mowed the lawn barefoot, biked to the Post Office, loved driving the dump truck for the harvest, and enjoyed going by moped to work in all types of weather. Mary had the ability to remain optimistic in the face of difficulty: whether a missing ingredient for dinner or something more serious, many will remember her infectious laugh throughout it all.


In her later years, Mary fought a long battle with Alzheimer’s Disease. Blessedly, though she lost her memories, her sunny disposition remained with her until the end.


Mary was predeceased by her husband, Gordon, her parents, Luther and Evelyn, and her brother, Fred.


She is survived by her brother Sanford, of Hatfield, and her sister Martha, of Rhode Island. She also leaves behind four children, Darryl and his wife Lucinda (McMurtry) of Hatfield, David and his wife Lori (Symanski) of Southborough, Brian and his wife Kathie (Woodward) of Hatfield, and Mary Ruth Seifel and her husband Scott of Belchertown; 12 grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.


The family is grateful for the many caregivers who helped her maintain a good quality of life.


A memorial service will be held Monday, December 26th at 2:00Pm at the Hatfield Congregational Church.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her memory to the Hatfield Congregational Church or to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Expressions of sympathy are available at:www.wrisleyfuneralhome.com