Mary S. Steger, 94 Buckingham Native Dies In Alabama

Published 11:54 am Sunday, August 15, 2010

ALABAMA, July 14 – Mary Spencer Steger, 94, daughter of the late James Gray Spencer and Mary Wilson Pratt and widow of Herbert Dancy Steger Jr., all natives of Buckingham County, died Thursday, July 9, 2009 in Huntsville, Alabama.

Born Mary Wilson Pratt Spencer on March 28,1915 at “Dixie”, the second of seven children, she attended Buckingham public school. She was an excellent scholar and a fine athlete. After her graduation she attended Phillips Business School in Lynchburg. Her working career included book-keeping at Story's Station in Colonial Heights, Blackwell Smith Pharmacy in Petersburg, and accounting with the Virginia State Welfare Office in Petersburg.

On March 26, 1937 she and Herbert Dancy Steger Jr., son of Herbert Dancy Steger and Virginia Lelia [Smith] Steger, all Buckingham natives, were married in Lovingston, Nelson County. Her husband, a Virginia State Trooper, died on November 18, 1984.

In 1939 she and her family attended Highland Methodist Church in Colonial Heights until the family moved to Petersburg, the Walnut Hill area. From a very large extended religious family who, with her, worshipped at the Methodist, Baptist, and Presbyterian churches at Buckingham Court House, she encouraged her children in their religious upbringing. She was a charter member of St. Mark Methodist Church in Walnut Hill, Petersburg, and was involved in many ministries there.

Her hobbies were many. She enjoyed sewing, knitting, crocheting, gardening, cooking, painting, and other arts and she possessed all skills learned from her mother and father on the farm. Her family history was very important to her and she spoke of her ancestors and collateral families as if they had lived during her lifetime. She was a true daughter of The Old Dominion. Her home was warm and inviting, wonderful aromas wafting from her kitchen, and a haven for all of us.

Her survivors include a daughter, Mary Carolyn [Steger] Mitton and husband, Carl Greger Mitton of Salem, IN; son, Herbert Dancy Steger III and wife, Linda Lou [Redford] Steger of Huntsville, AL; four grand-children and their spouses, Dr. Mary Sue [Jenkins] Sylwestrzak and husband, Theodore Bruno Sylwestrzak of Beverly Hills, MI, James George Jenkins III of Midland, MI, Claire Whitney [Steger] Renner and husband, Daniel Todd Renner and Catherine Burke [Steger] Castle and husband, James Earl Castle, all of Toney, AL.

She is also survived by great-grandchildren, Allisha Marie Jenkins, Michael Gerard Jenkins, Kristen Marie Sylwestrzak, Rachel Ann Sylwestrzak, Dustin Burke Hicklen, Michael Spencer Hicklen, Zoe Danielle Renner, Taylor Catherine Noel Childers, Jacob Thomas Childers, and Dancy Logan Castle; brother, Franklin Moseley Spencer and wife, Margarette Spencer of Buckingham; sisters, Florence Diller [Spencer] and husband, Noyes Watters Willett of Copperas Cove, TX and Meredith Page [Spencer] Staton of Dillwyn, widow of J. E. Staton; and sister-in-law, Joyce [Baird] Spencer of Farmville, widow of her brother, Whitcomb Pratt Spencer, who died in 2002 and many friends and neighbors who, with her family, will miss her greatly.

Her older brother, James G. Spencer Jr. died in 1988.

She will be laid to rest next to her beloved husband at the cemetery of Smyrna Methodist Church at Sheppards, on US Route 15 and near Buckingham County Route 636.

Memorials may be made to Buckingham Rescue Squad or to Historic Buckingham, Inc.

Funeral arrangements are by Dunkum Funeral Home in Dillwyn.