Katherine Jane Mayo Schmidt, 89, passed away at home on April 6, 2018. She was born in Roanoke, Virginia to Thomas Tabb Mayo III and Martha Sue Lavinder. After graduating from high school in Radford, Virginia, she went on to earn her teaching certificate and then Bachelor of Education from Mary Washington University in Fredericksburg, Virginia. It was during her time there that she met the love of her life, Bill Schmidt. They met on a train while he was still in the Navy and corresponded for several months until he proposed over Thanksgiving with her family in 1949. They were married July 1st, 1950. The couple set up house in Houston, Texas and Kathy earned her Master of Education degree from University of Houston. She taught for many years in the Houston Independent School District with a focus on English and literature, then moved on to becoming a counselor with Milby High School in Houston where she ran the testing and ESL programs.
Kathy and Bill built a weekend retreat near Lanely, Texas in 1968, which became the center of family gatherings for many years. They traveled the United States, Europe, Canada and the Mediterranean. The couple moved to Palestine to be closer to the country in 2006. Kathy was a generous philanthropist and an avid reader with an interest in mysteries, politics, literature, and American history. She was a formidable grammarian and crossword puzzle master, had an amazing memory for poetry, and was known for her quick wit. She has been described as a "brilliant " bridge player. She was active in the Harvey Woman's Club and Newcomers Club in Palestine, and found many wonderful friends in the community.
Kathy's husband Bill, and her sisters Martha Mayo Irwin and Betty Mayo Thor preceded Kathy in death. She is survived by her son Billy Schmidt and his wife Terri Caspary Schmidt, her brother Thomas Tabb Mayo IV and wife Elna Ann Mayo, and several nieces and nephews.
The family will be eternally grateful for the care and loving kindness shown to Kathy by the women of the Hearts of Gladys of Palestine, Virginia's Hospice, and also especially by her faithful friend and helper Daniel Guajardo and his wife Linda. Memorial donations may be made to the For Pet's Sake Animal Sanctuary in Palestine.
Memorial services for Katherine Jane Mayo Schmidt will be held 11:30 AM Saturday, April 14, 2018, at the First Presbyterian Church with Rev. Woody Meredith officiating. Arrangements have been entrusted to Bailey & Foster Funeral Home.
To view online leave condolences or sign the guest book go to www.baileyandfosterfuneralhome.com.
Published on April 12, 2018