Mary Church Williams passed away suddenly on Sunday, July 8, 2012, at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. The cause of death was pneumonia following a nine-month battle with breast cancer.
Williams was born Oct. 3, 1937. She was the daughter of Reynold Erskine Church and Mary Elting Church of Bronxville and New Paltz, N.Y., and the sister of Rennie Church, who predeceased her.
Williams obtained a master’s degree in English literature from Duke University, from which she graduated with the Class of 1959.
Following college, she pursued a career in print and TV journalism, specializing in interior design in New York, London and Los Angeles. She was editor of Home Decorating magazine, editor of the Home Magazine section of the Sunday Los Angeles Times and a writer for New West Magazine.
Williams was married to fellow Duke graduate Henry (Hank) Rouse, who died in 1964. In 1989, she married C.K. Williams, a prominent general contractor from Houston. They retired to Santa Fe, N.M., where C.K. became an accomplished artist.
In 1992, they moved to Montecito and lived in Birnam Wood. C.K. Williams died in 2011.
Williams is survived by her stepchildren with C.K. and will also be missed by her many friends here and abroad.