Mary Ellen Williams

Mary Ellen Williams, 86, of Cumberland Crossings in Carlisle, passed away peacefully on Monday, Oct. 21, 2019, with her two sons by her side.

She was born in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, on Jan. 2, 1933, to the late Samuel and Ella Heacock Mood.

She graduated from Doylestown High School in 1950, and went on to receive her Bachelor of Science degree in Home Economics from The Pennsylvania State University.

Mary Ellen worked as a teacher and home economist in New Jersey, West Virginia, and Michigan before finally settling in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, with her husband Allan Williams. In 1971, the family purchased the historic John Stough Tavern and farm in Stoughstown, Pennsylvania, where they spent many years renovating the stone farmhouse and property.

When Mary Ellen retired from teaching after 10 years in the Big Spring School District, she and Allan started the Field & Pine Bed and Breakfast, which they operated for more than 30 years. Mary Ellen and Allan were avid travelers and visited many countries throughout Europe, Asia and South America.

In 1991, they partnered with their friends the Goldthorpes to start Log Cabin Soups, which sold packaged soups based on Mary Ellen's homemade recipes. This successful soup business is still being operated as Cooke Tavern Soups by her son, Greg, and his wife, Mary Kay, who purchased the business in 2000.

Never one to let the grass grow under her feet, Mary Ellen was actively involved in many local organizations including: Camp Hill Civic Club, Shippensburg Garden Club, Carlisle Garden Club, Cumberland County Historical Society, Carlisle Newcomers Club, and the Harrisburg Home Economics Club. She also served as a Deacon and Elder for the Second Presbyterian Church in Carlisle.

Mary Ellen recognized the importance of education for women and, without a doubt, her most cherished time was spent with her fellow “sisters” of PEO Chapter CG of Carlisle, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide financial support for women focused on continuing their education.

She will be fondly remembered as the consummate hostess and a fabulous cook who always had a fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies on hand for anyone who stopped by for a visit. She was forever the optimist and went out of her way to help others in their time of need.

Mary Ellen is survived by her sons, Douglas Williams and wife, Robin (Rowe) Williams of Towson, Maryland, and Gregory Williams and wife, Mary Kay (Tomchick) Williams, of Spring Mills, Pennsylvania; two grandchildren, Ava and Evan Williams; her brother, Sam Mood of Millsboro, Delaware; and sister-in-law, Jean Mood of Doylestown, Pennsylvania.

She was predeceased by her husband of 60 years, Allan R. Williams; her sister, Emma Mood Grove; and her brothers, Donald and Ralph Mood.

A Celebration of Life will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019, at Second Presbyterian Church, 528 Garland Drive, Carlisle, Pa. 17013. A visitation will follow the service with a luncheon in the church rotunda.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to Second Presbyterian Church Memorial Gardens, 528 Garland Drive, Carlisle, Pa. 17013, or PEO International, Continuing Education Project, PEO Executive Office, 3700 Grand Ave., Des Moines, IA 50312-2899.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Hoffman Funeral Home & Crematory, 2020 W. Trindle Road, Carlisle, Pa. 17013.

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