Mary Ellen Williams

Mary Ellen Williams, age 82, of Dubuque, IA, completed her earthly journey on May 11, 2024, at home while surrounded by her loving family.  To honor Mary’s life, her Celebration of Life will be held from 12:00-4:00 p.m., on Sunday, June 9, 2024, in the Promenade Bridge Pavilion at Eagle Point Park, 2601 Shiras Avenue in Dubuque.  The Tri-State Cremation Center is humbly serving Mary’s family.


Mary was born on June 9, 1941, in Waukon, IA, a daughter to William S. and Mary Lucy (Clancy) Thomas.  She was a loving wife and mother who did her best to make the most out of life and the blessings and tragedies which both seem to find their way into it.  She was united in marriage to Eddy Edwards who was sadly called home much too early in life.  Mary thankfully discovered love again with Francis Williams and were blessed with many years and two children of their own as well until he also was called home ahead of her.  Mary found great joy in her family and nurturing them.  Coming home to a loaf of fresh baked bread was quite common in Mary’s home and her skills in the kitchen when it came to baking and cooking were second to none.  Sadly, Mary was forced to face the pain of losing five children throughout her life, a beyond difficult reality that no mother should have to bear.  Through it all, Mary strived to find the good in life where it presented itself.  She always enjoyed a little time at the flea market and collecting and restoring antiques were among some of her favorite pastimes.  She was also an avid bingo player who wore out her share of daubers over the years and even tried her luck at the casino from time to time.  Life was not an easy journey for Mary, but her love for her family and friends was continually on display whenever possible.  It’s with quite heavy hearts that we must say farewell for now to Mary, but we find peace in knowing that her earthly battles have now subsided and her eternal reunion with her loved one’s has begun.  Thank you, Mary, for reminding us that every day is a gift, every blessing should be recognized, and that none of us are promised a perfect life and it’s best to find the joy we seek where we can.  May the Lord bless and keep you safe in His loving arms until we see you again. 


Those left behind to cherish the memory of Mary include,

her three children,

Jock (Jeanna) Edwards, Maquoketa, IA,

Kelly (Brad) Gilson, Newton, IA,

and John J. (Shawna) Williams, Dubuque, IA;


her numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren;


her sister,

Patty Coffman, Dubuque, IA;


her sisters-in-law,

Lorraine Thomas, WI,

and Cindy Thomas, Dubuque, IA;


along with numerous extended family, friends, and neighbors.


Mary was preceded in death by her two husbands, Eddy Edwards and Francis Williams; her five children, Eddy Edwards, Tammy Edwards Dauber, Billy Edwards, Steve Edwards, and Harry Edwards; her siblings, Joan Johnson, Pauline (Fred “Fritz”) Donath, Rose Renard, William “Doc” Thomas, John Thomas, and Jeff Thomas; and her brother-in-law, Jim Coffman.


Mary’s family would like to thank the nurses and staff at Hospice of Dubuque for all of their professional and compassionate care.


In lieu of flowers, memorials and expressions of sympathy may be sent directly to Mary’s family at Kelly Gilson, 7607 Highway F48 West, Newton, IA, 50208.


Online condolences may be shared with Mary’s family at

Celebration of Life

Promenade Bridge Pavilion at Eagle Point Park
2601 Shiras Avenue, Dubuque, Iowa, 52001
June 9th, 2024 from 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM

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