LAKELAND, FLA. – Mary Elizabeth Worden Gaydos, 92, died of respiratory failure on Friday August 30, 2013, in Lakeland, Fla.
Born in Fulton, NY, on February 21, 1921, Mrs. Gaydos spent her early childhood in Cortland, NY, where her father, Arthur Worden – who was stage manager at Fulton’s Quirk Theater when it opened in 1913 – managed a vaudeville theater.
When movies replaced vaudeville, the family moved to Wolcott, NY, where her father bought the Palace Theater.
Her grandfather, Allen Worden, was a Fulton artist whose successful stage scenery business, A. E. Worden Scenic Co., 511 Academy St., designed and painted backdrops for Broadway productions in New York City.
She attended Rider College, Trenton, NJ, where she met and married Andrew Gaydos in 1941 and then returned to Fulton when Mr. Gaydos was employed by the Nestle Company.
Before moving to Florida when her husband retired in 1979, Mrs. Gaydos was an active community leader in Fulton.
She was president of the Lee Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, the Fairgrieve School PTA and Arrowhead Garden Club.
She chaired the Cracker Barrel Fair for a number of years and served in many capacities at Fulton’s First Methodist Church.
Mrs. Gaydos is survived by daughter, Carol Elizabeth Gaydos Tenney, Mammoth Lakes, Calif.; four grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; three nieces and two nephews.
She was predeceased by her parents, Arthur and Flora Worden, Lakeland, Fla.; daughter, Barbara Whiting, Silver Spring, Md.; husband, Andrew; sister, Frances Porcher, Fort Myers, Fla.; and brother, Leslie Worden, Lake Mary, Fla.
Condolences may be sent to http://www.heathfuneralchapel.com/ in Lakeland.
Memorial gifts to Lakeland Volunteers in Medicine www.lvim.net; Alliance for Independence www.afi.fl.org; The Cottage, Gaithersburg, Md., www.hospicecaring.org/donations.html; and Cornerstone Hospice www.cornerstonehospice.org are appreciated in lieu of flowers.