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Mary Jo Haggard

May 24, 1928 — August 8, 2023

Oklahoma City


Mary Jo Haggard passed away peacefully surrounded by family on August 8, 2023 at the age of 95 after a beautiful life well-lived. Jo was born May 24, 1928 in Plano, Texas to Olney and Leta Dillehay. She grew up on a vibrant farm near Plano, Texas. As a child, she enjoyed playing piano and painting, hobbies she continued to love for many years. She attended Plano High School then Texas Christian University. Through mutual friends, Jo met Thomas Haggard who was drawn to her warm smile and kind heart. At 20, Jo and Tom married on November 20, 1948, and lived in Lubbock for 5 years while Tom completed his engineering degree at Texas Tech. They lived in the Dallas area for a short time, then moved to Corpus Christi in the mid-1960s where Tom established his engineering firm.  For 52 years, they enjoyed building a beautiful life together, many close friendships, and traveling near and abroad with friends and the “DD” square dancers.


Jo was very active in many organizations such as the PEO-Philanthropic Educational Organization-Texas Chapter, Engineers’ Auxiliary to Texas Society of Professional Engineers serving as president, Seven Arts Study Club, Garden Club, and a member and deacon at First Christian Church-Corpus Christi. 


Jo’s greatest joy in life was being a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She was devoted to her family and loved watching them grow and achieve.  She adored both of her in-laws. She leaves behind a wonderful legacy of family members who affectionately call her “Mimi” and “Memmers” and will be missed dearly.  She will be remembered as a smart, devoted mother, caring and loving friend, and for her infectious positivity.


She had many friends whom she absolutely cherished.  Over the years, she developed many close friendships and maintained connections from childhood, college and all through life. As an only child, Jo understood the importance of friends. They became family. She gave emotionally to relationships, never taking. She had the knack for making people feel at ease, important and special, and loved for who they were, no pretense. Her gift of a very quick wit was fun, unexpected, delightful, and entertaining.  Even in her 90s staying sharp-witted, she did the daily New York Times crossword puzzle.  She had a keen eye for design and beautiful spaces; every room needs “a touch of yellow” and many sought her opinions.


She was preceded in death by her husband, Thomas E. Haggard, and her mother and father, Leta and Olney Dillehay. She is survived by her loving family including son Brent Haggard, and his wife, Donna and their sons, Grant Haggard and his daughter, Elle Leslie Haggard (great-granddaughter of Jo) and son, Rhodes Haggard; and daughter Ann H. Ross, and her husband, Malcolm and their daughter, Catherine Ross and her fiancé, Thomas Palzkill.


Her family would like to recognize her caregivers in Houston, Rehab Med Care, and in Oklahoma City, Valir Hospice Care, Waterford Mansion staff, and Synergy HomeCare.


Private family graveside services will be held in Allen, TX. If desired, contributions can be sent to First Christian Church- Corpus Christi, Corinth Presbyterian Church-Parker Texas, or Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research.

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