Cover photo for Mr. TALMADGE DeWITT "Ted" MAYO III's Obituary
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Mr. TALMADGE DeWITT "Ted" MAYO III

June 16, 1940 — June 12, 2020

Mr. TALMADGE DeWITT "Ted" MAYO III

FORT WORTH – Talmadge DeWitt Mayo III, beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother, brother-in-law, uncle, great-uncle, and dear friend to hundreds, died peacefully with his immediate family at his bedside, on Friday, June 12, four days shy of his 80th birthday. He lost his year-long, courageous battle with cancer, but gained the gift of eternal life with his Savior Jesus Christ. SERVICE: A private service at the grave will be held Saturday, June 27, in Greenwood Memorial Park. The Rev. Jake Worley will officiate, assisted by The Rev. Sam Wilgus. A memorial service is planned for the fall, when Covid restrictions ease. MEMORIALS: Should friends desire, donations in Ted’s memory may be made to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 1600 Airport Freeway, Suite 501, Bedford, TX 76022, the Van Cliburn Foundation, 201 Main St., Suite 100, Fort Worth, TX 76102, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 917 Lamar St., Fort Worth, TX 76102, the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth, 2900 Alemeda St., Fort Worth, TX 76108, or a charity of choice. Born June 16, 1940 in Marshall, Texas, he was the son of Talmadge DeWitt “T.D.” Mayo, Jr. and Virginia Claire Driskell Mayo. Never really liking his formal name of Talmadge, he was known as “Ted” all of his life. At the age of four, Ted’s family moved to Galveston, where his father attended medical school. Thereafter, the family moved to Dallas, where T.D. completed an Internship and Residency program in Obstetrics and Gynecology. In 1952, the Mayo family moved to Fort Worth, where Ted enrolled in Monnig Junior High School. He went on to attend Arlington Heights High School, where he graduated as the Salutatorian in 1958. His future wife, Judy Ryan, was a year behind him at AHHS, but their paths did not cross much at this time. Ted studied at Southern Methodist University where he was a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, graduating in 1962. He then entered the University of Texas Law School in Austin, where he graduated with high academic honors in 1965. It was during Ted’s first year in law school and Judy’s senior year at Vassar College, that the two began dating steadily. Upon law school graduation, Ted served as a Captain in the Judge Advocate General (JAG) program in the U.S. Air Force, beginning in 1966. He and Judy were married shortly thereafter at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Fort Worth, and began their new life together at Cannon Air Force Base, Clovis, New Mexico. Their first daughter, Jennifer, was born during their time in Clovis. In 1969 they moved back to Fort Worth, which became their permanent home. Their second daughter, Marian, was born two years later. Ted had a long and very rewarding vocation in the field of Family Law. He served in the law firms of Garrett & Nation and Dixon & Petrovich before becoming a partner in the firms of Mayo, Pickering, Hoover & Carter, later Mayo, Pickering & Hoover, and finally for many years as Mayo & Pickering. His law partners became dear, lifelong friends. Ted’s practice of family law became a real ministry for him as he helped many families through some of life’s crises and traumatic situations. He had an excellent listening ear, and his deep, booming voice was unmistakable in the courtroom. He always had a special concern and love for children in families who were experiencing breakdown, and he labored hard for their best interests. Ted also had a deep love and concern for many who were broken, despondent, ill, and overwhelmed by life. He spent four decades of his life meeting them where they were, ministering to them in a number of remarkable and compassionate ways. He met with them personally and spoke in many different venues. During his struggle with cancer, many of these people came by to visit and thank him, which is a lasting gift for his family. A true “Renaissance Man,” Ted loved beauty in all its forms, delighting in art, classical music, dancing, food beautifully prepared and served, museums, lovely flowers, and travel. He also loved festivity in life, and he himself added a great touch of festivity to any gathering. An accomplished pianist himself, he never missed any of the Van Cliburn Piano Competitions. He was well known on the dance floor as well, and he and Judy had a special love for dancing all of their years together. Ted loved formal occasions and would truly have been delighted to be in a tuxedo or white tie and tails every night. For many years, he served on the Van Cliburn Board of Directors, more recently on the Cliburn Advisory Council. He enjoyed his memberships in the Jewel Charity Ball and the Arthritis Foundation as well. He also formerly served in the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth on the Bishop’s Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse. After his grandson, Turner, was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis in 2006, Ted became passionately involved with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, helping with many fundraising efforts to try to find a cure for CF. For over 50 years, he was a member of the State Bar of Texas. He was a member of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church and was a constant, wonderful support to Judy in her years of serving on staff there, attending a number of national church conventions with her. In the last 20 years, he and Judy also enjoyed five memorable trips to Europe. Ted adored his family, and they all adored him as well; his favorite times were spent with them. His grandchildren called him Paw-Paw and Poppy. His final prayer was to get to the wedding of his oldest granddaughter on December 28, 2019, and to dance with her. God granted that request in a beautiful way. Ted was “one of a kind” in many ways. He will be sorely missed by his family and by so many friends, but we all take comfort in knowing that his suffering is now over. Toward the end, he was very weary and ready to meet his Savior. The family wishes to express deep gratitude to Dr. Roger Eppstein, Dr. Drew Pumphrey, Dr. Jay Lohrey, and the dedicated nursing staff on the 3rd floor, Tower B, at The Stayton for their compassionate care for Ted during the final months of his life. Also, deep thanks go to Beyond Faith Hospice for their loving care for him during his very final days. SURVIVORS: His beloved wife of over 53 years, Judy Ryan Mayo; daughters: Jennifer Mayo Frey and her husband Tom, and Marian Mayo DeMott and her husband, Jason; grandchildren: Dr. Christine Frey Noel and her husband, Dr. David Noel; Thomas Lawrence Frey III; Ella Claire DeMott, Willing Cannon DeMott, Turner Ryan DeMott, and Briggs Mayo DeMott; sister: Melinda Mayo Van’t Slot and her husband, Peter; sister-in-law: Marian Ryan Rios and her husband, Raymundo; and his nieces and nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews, cousins, and extended family members. To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Mr. TALMADGE DeWITT "Ted" MAYO III please visit our Sympathy Store.
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