Mary Pollard Abrams of Atlanta died peacefully at home on June 30, 2013.
She was carried aloft on the wave of history from a tiny Polish village to a long and wonderful life in America. Born Meri Gilule in Indura, Poland on Aug. 10, 1915, she was the sixth of seven children of Mascha Eta (Bebke) and Zachariah Gilule.
Mary was one of only two children in her family to complete high school. Driven by her adventurous spirit, 19-year-old Mary left her homeland for America in the spring of 1935. She joined her older brother and other extended family members in Chattanooga, Tenn. She attended the University of Chattanooga and worked while she attended college, saving enough money to pay for her sweetheart’s passage from Poland to America.
That sweetheart, Sidney Pollard, married Mary in 1937. The romantic love story of the attractive young Polish immigrants was reported with great fanfare in both the local paper and The New York Times. Mary and Sidney raised their three children to value education, to work with diligence and integrity and to embrace Jewish traditions. Mary was widowed in 1960 and eventually married two more times.
She lived for several years with her third husband, Carroll P. Abrams, in Georgetown, S.C. After his death, she moved to Atlanta where she lived for the rest of her life.
Mary Pollard Abrams was a remarkable woman of courage, intelligence and commitment. With her zest for life, her love of learning, and her endlessly positive attitude, she was a source of strength and a great inspiration to her family. She was dearly loved and will be deeply missed.
She is survived by her three children, Judy Pollard Dubrof (Jerry) of Canton, Ga., Dr. Zane F. Pollard (Nancy) of Sandy Springs and Babette Pollard Jackson (Ambassador Robert P. Jackson) of Yaounde, Cameroon. Her grandchildren are Cydnee Dubrof (Robert McDonough), David Dubrof, Joe Dubrof (Julie), Dylan Pollard (Mali) and Derek Pollard (Jill). Her 12 great-grandchildren are Jordan, Morgan and Stephanie Dubrof; Zachary, Jeffrey and Katie Dubrof; Ava, Beatrice and Levi Pollard; and Forest, Lexi and Hayes Pollard. Her dear and faithful friend, Maritza Soca, brought comfort and joy to her life. The family is grateful for the caregivers at Lenbrook, who provided tender care during Mary’s years as a resident and during her final illness.
An online guestbook is available at edressler.com. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the charity of one’s choice. The funeral was held at 1 p.m. on Sun., July 7, 2013 at B’nai Zion Cemetery in Chattanooga. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care.