Mary Sellman McIntosh, 90, of West Simsbury, CT, beloved mother, grandmother and wife of the late James B. McIntosh, passed away Wednesday, July 1, 2020 at McLean in Simsbury, CT. Mary was born August 4, 1929 in the Bronx, NY, daughter of the late Nils T. and May (Duke) Sellman. She grew up in Scarsdale NY and also lived in Irvington NY prior to moving to Simsbury with her family 50 years ago.
Mary received her Bachelors Degree in math from Middlebury College, Class of 1951, one of only two women math majors in her class. Fondly known as “Mrs. Mac”, Mary taught math for more than 50 years and was truly passionate about teaching and her students. Mary began her teaching career at Masters School in Dobbs, Ferry, NY, then continued at Westledge School in West Simsbury, CT, and retired from Miss Porter’s School in Farmington, CT in 2001, after 25 years there teaching math, as Department Chair, and later Director of Studies. From 1982 to 2000 Mary was honored with the Elsa Parker Armour Teaching Chair. Continuing to follow her passion in "retirement" through her 70's and into her 80's, Mary enjoyed frequent substitute teaching at Simsbury High School and Henry James Jr. High, insisting that "kids keep me young".
Mary lived a life with boundless energy and had many varied interests. She was fondly referred to by family as the "Everready Bunny". Over the years, Mary enjoyed numerous interests including skiing, tennis, paddle tennis, golf, summer vacations on Cape Cod, traveling cross-country with family, escaping to the mountains of Vermont and sailing (on calm days!) on Lake Champlain. Mary loved knitting, particularly while sitting in staff meetings and watching the Hartford Whalers, and outfitted family with beautiful sweaters for many years. She enjoyed bird watching, counting deer as they regularly visited her yard, and she was an avid gardener, paying no mind to the occasional bear who lumbered nearby while she tended to her garden. Mary also dearly loved sharing her Swedish traditions particularly at Christmas, hosting Swedish smorgasbords for 20+ family and friends on Christmas Eve, even hosting last year's family Christmas Eve celebration at McLean. She was a member of the Asylum Hill Congregational Church in Hartford, CT, and the Simsbury Library Mystery Book Club.
Mary loved being surrounded by family and lived her life with purpose and a positive, resilient spirit. She always kept her sense of humor, pushing through health issues over the years, including cancers and dementia, though COVID-19 was her final formidable foe.
Mary is survived by her children, Susan McIntosh Banville of Hartford, CT, James B. McIntosh, Jr. and his wife Wendy Menzel McIntosh of Lincoln, VT, John S. McIntosh of Stowe, VT, Jane McIntosh Diorio and her husband Greg of Redding, CT; four grandchildren, Scott and Christopher Banville, Ernesta McIntosh, and Peter Diorio; brother and best friend Nils Sellman of Simsbury, CT nephews David Sellman of LaGrange, GA, Byran Sellman of New Hartford, CT and niece Nancy Scott of New Britain, CT and their families as well as “adopted” family Judy Bratt of Connecticut, and Kathy Garst of North Carolina..
Mary's family wishes to extend special thanks to the kind and compassionate staff (too numerous to name) at McLean for their caring support of Mary and the whole family.
A graveside service and celebration of life will be held at a future date, due to present pandemic circumstances. In lieu of flowers, those who wish may make memorial donations to: Miss Porter's School for the math department, 60 Main St. Farmington, CT 06032; Middlebury College, Center for Community Engagement (STEAM Girls) Middlebury College, Gift Administration 700 Exchange Street Middlebury College, VT 05753, www.engage.middlebury.edu/give ; or to the Alzheimer's Association at www.alz.org . The Vincent Funeral Home of Simsbury, CT is caring for the arrangements. Please visit Mary’s “Book of Memories” at www.vincentfuneralhome.com for online condolences