Marie Fields was born Hessie Marie Messer March 28, 1937 in Mingo County West Virginia to Frank and Nancy Messer. Marie was born into a hard-working, God-fearing farming family and was taught from a very young age how to work with purpose and show love for others. Growing up as the oldest daughter and one of thirteen children she has been serving and caring for others with passion and grace since she was a very little girl.
She left home to pursue what would become a life of service at the young age of 17 when she moved to Delbarton, West Virginia to work as a live-in caregiver for a young family. Since that moment she never stopped putting others first and sharing her kindness and compassion with everyone she met. It was only four years after leaving home she stumbled upon a good old-fashioned Army boy named Denver Ray Fields and stole his heart. She loved to tell the story that they were married only weeks after meeting on a beautiful sunny day in August because their love “just felt right” and she knew he was her forever. They moved to Florida soon after to begin their lives together. Florida livin’ was an adjustment for Marie. The Florida lightning was like nothing she had ever seen and she used to hide under the bed while Ray was at work, but being the strong-minded woman she was, she adjusted quickly and fell into her role as a devoted wife and before she knew it, soon to be mother.
Their oldest son, Randy Ray, was born shortly after followed by two more: Eric Scott and Lesa Dawn – all with big blue eyes like their momma. From that moment Marie dedicated her life to caring for others. Ray traveled often for work and Marie kept a safe and loving home all the while raising three children with firm morals and a soft heart. If she wasn’t caring for her children at home, she was caring for the children of others. First working at preschools and with various families, before becoming an instrumental caregiver for her grandchildren. At one point or another, Marie was a loving caregiver to each and every one of her six grandchildren. She spent so much of her time teaching the grandkids how to be kind, how to work, and how to love God like she did. Her life revolved around her family and her role as “Grandmommy” was one she cherished. She leaves these grandchildren with fond memories of Easter Egg hunts, hours of jumping on the trampoline, and Thanksgiving dinners that could put the strongest man into a blissful food coma.
Ray’s unexpected passing in 1999 was a tragedy for the family, but Marie held strong as the matriarch of the Fields family. She moved to Lake Mary, Florida in 2014 to live with her oldest son, Randy. Although Lake Mary didn’t provide her with the big backyard she was used to on Country Road, Marie never stopped growing her tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers and she never stopped filling the arms of her children and grandchildren with the bounty from her harvest. Her green onions could have won more than one award at a county fair had she entered, but Marie saw no purpose in her talent but to serve her loved ones. There has never been a woman more dedicated to the happiness and well-being of her family. Her grace and mercy for her family were never-ending, unless you challenged her to a game of Dr. Mario, that is. Anyone brave enough to go a round or two with her on the Nintendo would learn quickly that her usual compassion only waivered when the title of Dr. Mario champion was on the line.
Marie Fields passed peacefully at home on Saturday March 5th under the care of her children and with the support and love of her grandchildren. She is survived and forever cherished by her three children, Randy, Eric, and Lesa, and six grandchildren, Aaron, Eric Jr., Zack, Rachel, Joseph, and Hope as well as one sister, Helen. Her passing is heartbreaking, but her life was full and her impact endless.
Friends may call on the family on Friday March 11th from 11am to 12 noon at the Brownlie – Maxwell Funeral Home with a funeral service to follow at 12 noon. Burial will be at Florida Memorial Gardens.
1 Corinthians 2:9 reads, “…No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.” We lay Marie to rest taking comfort that she has accepted her new role as guardian angel in a Heaven so beautiful that we cannot even fathom its perfection. Rest in peace, Marie, as your soul lives on in those you loved.