Mary Coulter Montgomery 60, died on August 24, 2017 in her Asheville apartment. Mary was born on August 30, 1956 in Asheville, North Carolina and was a lifelong resident. She attended Asheville High School and graduated from the Newfound School. She was inducted into the WNC Sports Hall of Fame and was awarded a swimming scholarship to Florida State University.
Mary began swimming at a young age and was an exceptional athlete. Her dream was to go to the Olympics and she made that dream a reality. Mary was coached by her mother and went on to win the Olympic Trials in the 400 Individual Medley and placed 6th in the 1972 Munich Olympics at the age of 15. Later she went to the Pan American Games and won a silver medal in the 800 Freestyle.
Mary worked in the hospitality industry for many years and was an ambassador for Asheville. She also taught swimming lessons and coached many competitive teams over the years.
Mary was a bright, compassionate and caring woman. She never met a stranger and was always kind and thoughtful. She was a talented artist, poet, cook and animal and nature lover. She especially loved the mountains, art, crafts, music and everything Asheville! Mary loved to laugh and enjoyed the company of good friends and being with family. She loved life and valued each day.
Mary is survived by her father Wayne Swope Montgomery; brothers Swope and Woody; sisters Ann and Jane; sons Tim, Mike and Conor; grandchildren Sophia and Owen, and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
In Lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to the Mountain True, 29 N. Market Street, Suite 610, Asheville, NC 28801 or to the Southern Highlands Art Craft Guild, Milepost 382 Blue Ridge Parkway, Asheville, NC 28805.
The family will hold a celebration of life service at 2:00 PM on Saturday, September 30 in the Chapel of Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian in Arden.