Mary Nan Mercer, 90, of Pampa, passed away on Monday, October 24, 2022, in Pampa.
Services will be at 4:30 PM Thursday, October 27, 2022, at Carmichael-Whatley Colonial Chapel, with Ken Carter, Executive Pastor of Southcrest Baptist Church in Lubbock, officiating. Burial will follow at Memory Gardens Cemetery under the direction of Carmichael-Whatley Funeral Directors and Crematory.
Mary Nan Howell was born on September 9, 1932 in Quail, Texas to Frank and Ione Howell. Mary Nan attended elementary and junior high school in Clovis, New Mexico. She had a love and talent for the piano, and she took lessons at the West Texas Conservatory of Musical Arts. Mary Nan attended Dumas High School where she played tennis. She graduated from Draughon’s Business College in Amarillo.
Mary Nan was employed by Santa Fe Railroad in Amarillo. Then, as a young 22-year-old mom with two children, she was blessed to be hired by Celanese in Pampa, Texas. The friendships she made during her time there were true treasures. She amazed co-workers with her extraordinary ability to remember telephone numbers, account numbers and vendor numbers. There were thousands by the time of her retirement that dwelt on the tip of her tongue. Beginning in 1955, she was the Accounts Payable Clerk. Processing invoices for payment was done manually where entries were made in a general ledger book, and the checks were typed by Mary Nan. Expectations were high for secretaries and clerks in the 50’s; nothing was taken for granted. Your job was your job and you were expected to do it. Mary Nan recalled a time when she was in the hospital after being involved in an accident and the controller brought invoices for her to pay. When she first began working for Celanese there were 10 invoices to pay in a day – when she retired 35 years later there were around 300 a day.
In 1987, and thousands of miles of adding machine tape later, she left her little corner of the administration building to join her husband, Dwaine Mercer, in retirement. Dwaine and Mary Nan bought a new truck, jeep, and fifth wheel and let new journeys begin. They said they were spending their kids’ inheritance. Dwaine would drive while Mary Nan worked on numerous beautiful cross stitch pieces. There was no GPS then, so she would read the maps and give directions. She was called “The Nag-i-gator.” They made many new and lasting friendships in Port Aransas, Texas, Lake City, Colorado, and the Cabot Ranch. They also had a load of fun attending a few football games cheering on the White Deer Bucks, Pampa Harvesters, Texas Tech Red Raiders, and Miami Dolphins! When she met someone new, one of her first questions was “do you like Texas Tech football?”
She recently celebrated her 90th birthday with dear family and friends laughing all the way!
Mary Nan was preceded in death by her parents, Ione and Ellis Cartee; brother, Pate Lester; sister, Helen Samples; husband, Dwaine Mercer; son, Rick and wife, Linda Powers; daughter, Teresa Meil.
She is survived by two daughters, Barbara Ann Thomas and “Favorite Son-In-Law,” Stephen, and Judy Pierce and husband Jim; much loved grandchildren, Bart Thomas and wife Lesa, Zach Thomas and wife Maritzabel, Katina Taylor, Jim Pierce, Chris Pierce, Nicholas Pierce, Kimberly Dison, Michael Meil, and Mark Meil; great grandchildren, Taylor, Ty, and Trey Thomas, Brooklyn Lepard, Isaiah, Mason, and Zoe Taylor, Christian, Valentina and Sienna Thomas, Ryan, Jennifer, William, and Evelyn Pierce.
Memorials may be made to Cross Ministries, PO Box 370, Groom, Texas 79039.