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Rita Browning Mayfield

Obituary for Rita Browning Mayfield

May 2, 1938 - June 23, 2017
Austin, Texas | Age 79


We are going to miss Rita Browning Mayfield – an amazing and devoted wife, loving mother, gentle Gram, trusted friend, mentor by example to many, a woman of profound faith who when needed was willingly there with her smile, graciousness and sensitivity to do what she could to meet the needs of others. Her physical heart stopped its beating on June 23, 2017 but the heart of her being continues to echo through the lives of only God knows how many. Who she was and what she had to offer helped bring out the best in children with special needs and youth with whom she had worked when young. Among adults, her gentle leadership helped bring out the best in individuals and groups in the congregations where her husband was pastor. Rita was a skilled seamstress and she made beautiful quilts. She enjoyed conversation and listened with compassion and good humor. She abhorred violence and found no entertainment value in violence in movies or on TV. (Because she fell in love with the characters, NCIS was a mild exception.) Striving toward a life of compassion and cooperation that helps make life better for all was for her of higher value than competitive, self-centered striving. Her daily living consistently reflected tenderness and strength rooted in the faith and hope and love that were at the core of her being.

Rita (her unused first name is Sylvia) was born in Houston, Texas, May 2, 1938, the second of three children born to Ralph and Betty Browning. Her older brother is Baron (Bud) Browning and with his wife Carol lives in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Her younger brother, Richard Browning, preceded her in death and his wife Jeannie continues to reside in Arlington, Texas.

Rita married James L (Jim) Mayfield in 1961. He continues to live in Austin, as does their son Robert. Their daughter Betty lives in Amissville, Virginia. with her husband Phil Gibbons. Robert's two teenage daughters, Isabel (a college freshman) and Giovanna (a high school senior) live in Austin. Betty's twin daughters, Sara and LiAnna are in high school and Betty's oldest daughter Katelynn is a Marine.

Jim's two sisters and their husbands have been additional sisters and brothers whom Rita dearly loved. Sue and Don Winsor live in George West, Texas. Sarah Franklin continues to live in Lake Kiowa, Texas, following the death of her husband George.

The children and grandchildren of her brothers' families and of the families of Jim's sisters have each had a special place in Rita's heart.

A memorial service will be at Tarrytown United Methodist Church in Austin, TX (2601 Exposition Blvd.) Saturday, July 1 at 11 am with reception to follow. The family requests that in lieu of flowers contributions be made in her memory to Tarrytown United Methodist Church or some other charity.

Recommended Local Florist

Suggested Memorial Donations

  • Tarrytown United Methodist Church
    2601 Exposition Blvd.
    Austin, TX 78703

Arrangements By

Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home North

3125 N Lamar Blvd.
Austin, TX 78705
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