WOOSTER – Mary Catherine Taylor Cole was the first child of Rollie Leon Tyler and Crystal Lorraine Hardee and grew up in Charleston, South Carolina where she attended The High School of Charleston on Rutledge Avenue, where she met her future husband, Thomas Phillip Tom Cole. She graduated from Columbia College, Columbia, SC with a degree in International Relations and a minor in English.
During college and after graduation she worked closely with Julian Bond and the beginnings of the Operation Headstart program that was intended to provide comprehensive early childhood education, health, nutrition, and parent involvement services to low-income children and their families.
She later moved to North Carolina and began a promising banking career with North Carolina National Bank (NCNB) in Durham, NC. She and Tom Cole married in Chapel Hill, NC, where he had just graduated from the University of North Carolina. They moved to Hilton Head Island, SC where he worked at Sea Pines Resort and she continued her banking career with the Bank of Beaufort branch located on Hilton Head.
She gave up her banking career to follow her husband s hotel career while raising their two children. As they frequently relocated and the children grew older, she kept busy and worked as a manager of a private bank club, a human resources manager, the administrative assistant to the principal of a private school, a horse breeder, an accountant for a chain of mall shops and as the office manager for a security company.
They lived in South Carolina, Atlanta, GA, Louisville, KY, Fort Myers, FL, St. Petersburg Beach, FL, New Orleans, LA, Columbia, MD, Dallas, TX, Cincinnati, OH, Durango, CO and Honolulu, HI before moving to Bangkok, Thailand in 1991 for the next ten years when her husband was appointed Vice President for Southeast Asia Operations for Benchmark Hospitality International. In Bangkok, she managed serviced apartments for a member of the Thai Royal Family.
While in Bangkok, they travelled extensively throughout Southeast Asia and China with several trips to Europe as well. After September 11, 2001, her husband requested a transfer back to the United States and they returned to the USA in late 2001, when Tom was assigned by Benchmark to manage the Glade Springs Resort in Daniel, WV. Soon after that, he was recruited by The Ohio State University to manage their conference facilities at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) in Wooster, OH.
Although she elected to remain technically unemployed in Wooster, she was very active in civic and social activities and won the Volunteer of the Year award from Goodwill Industries and was presented with a Paul Harris Fellowship by the Rotary Club of Wooster for her many volunteer activities in the community.
She is survived by her husband of 48 years, Thomas Phillip Tom Cole, their daughter Tanya Elizabeth Cole of Atlanta, GA, their son Phillip Tyler (Maria) Cole of Greenville, SC and their two grandchildren, Jonathon Tyler Cole and Eleni Sophia Cole, her sister, Jacqueline (Edward) Rabin, her step-father, Floyd E. Taylor, Jr., her aunt, Frances (James) King as well as several nephews, nieces and cousins.
There will be a memorial Mass on Thursday, December 19, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Mary Catholic Church, 527 Beall Ave., Wooster. Burial will take place in the family plot in Charleston, SC.
McIntire, Bradham & Sleek Funeral Home, 216 E. Larwill St., Wooster is assisting the family.
At the request of the family, and in lieu of flowers, they suggest that contributions be made to Goodwill Industries of Wayne and Holmes Counties, PO Box 1188, Wooster, OH 44691 or to St. Mary Catholic Church, PO Box 109, Wooster, OH 44691.
Online condolences may be left for the family at www.mcintirebradhamsleek.com.
Goodwill Industries of Wayne and Holmes Counties, PO Box 1188, Wooster, OH 44691 or St. Mary Catholic Church, PO Box 109, Wooster, OH 44691
A Memorial Mass will be held on Saturday, December 19, 2015 at 10:00 AM at St. Mary Catholic Church, 527 Beall Avenue, Wooster.
No calling hours