Mary Lee Hendrix dies at 80

BLAIR – Longtime contributor to The Voice, Blair native Mary Lee Hendrix, 80, has died after being ill for several months.

Hendrix

Hendrix, known throughout the community for her caring, effusive personality, her rhinestone eye glasses and elaborate earrings and jewelry, was always at the forefront of community events snapping pictures for The Voice, the Carolina Panorama newspaper and the Columbia Star. She was affectionately known in the community as ‘the picture lady.’ From 2012 until her health declined last summer, she was, essentially, The Voice’s star reporter of activities on the west side and especially of the goings-on at her home church, Gethsemane Baptist Church in Blair.

The daughter of the late Lee and Beaudell Hendrix, Mary Lee Hendrix was the oldest of seven siblings in the Blair community.

She graduated from McCrorey-Liston High School and earned a bachelor’s degree from Benedict College and master’s degrees from both the University of South Carolina and the University of Georgia.

Hendrix began her 54-year teaching career as a first grade teacher at her beloved McCrorey-Liston school. While later teaching in Georgia, Hendrix helped integrate the Oconee County school system during the turbulent civil rights era of the 1960’s. She also taught in Georgia’s Oglethorpe County Consolidated schools.

Following the death of her father, Hendrix returned to South Carolina to care for her mother. She took a job at Benedict College as a media specialist/assistant professor, retiring from the college in 2015.

Hendrix served as the public relation specialist and financial secretary for her church and was a member of the Mass Choir.

She was first-runner-up to Miss Benedict College, was a member of Zeta Phi Beta sorority and served on the Fairfield County Library Board. Other awards and recognitions included: Personality of the South, Outstanding Young Woman Award and Ambassador for Christians. Hendrix was inducted into the 2018 Fairfield County School District Hall of Fame.

Friends and family are invited to gather at Clifton Hendrix’s home located at 17938 Newberry Road for a cookout on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 2 p.m. to celebrate of Hendrix’s life. The funeral will be held on Sunday, Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. at Gethsemane Baptist Church in Blair. Burial will be in the church cemetery. Glover Memorial Chapel is assisting the family.