Obituary: Patricia “Mimi” Wylie Whitmire

Patricia “Mimi” Wylie Whitmire

Patricia Wylie Whitmire, 74, of Vidor died suddenly Monday, May 8, 2017. She was born Nov. 13, 1942, in Winnsboro, Louisiana, to Olive Marie Holland Wylie and Harrison Wesley Wylie Sr.

Loved deeply by all that knew her, “Mimi” lived most of her life in Texas despite being born in Louisiana. Growing up in Vidor with her four brothers and two sisters, it would be hard to not know at least one of the Wylie clan. Seldom losing a friend but continually making new ones, in the end, she was a true friend to many. She visited them when they were ill, and could always be counted on if you needed a kind word of encouragement. She prayed for those she knew and many she did not, and her prayers were sincere with unquestioned belief and strength. You absolutely wanted this prayer warrior on your team.

Mimi had a huge heart for others, starting first with family, but no one was ever left out — she included everyone. Bring a girlfriend home, and she was family; you could get divorced, maybe in the courts, but not from Mimi. Once you’re family, you’re always family. She was always her grandchildren’s biggest fan, and no matter what they were involved in, she was there to cheer them on to success. And even though the nieces and nephews had their own parents and grandparents to cheer them on, Mimi was always there for them, as if they were her own. Each would argue they were her favorite because she told them they were, and you knew she meant it.

Family time was very important to Mimi: a fish fry to celebrate a birthday, a crawfish boil to honor a new graduate, or even the once-a-month game nights when her sisters and brothers came together to test their skills and perseverance in various games. Dominoes was a favorite, and when Mimi would delay her move and someone would say, “Waiting on you,” she would answer back with, “Give me time. I’m strategizing.” She played to win. Let her start telling a story in the middle of a game? Well break out the pallets, because it’s going to be a sleepover.

Books were her life, starting with her Bible. She would proudly tell anyone who would listen that she read it cover to cover many times. The Bible, while certainly the most important in her life, was not the only book she loved. Mimi also loved a good romance novel. Maybe a little bit for the romance, but most would agree it was about her ability to immerse herself in different places and different times. Her books, and there were thousands of them, were her ticket to places that not until far too late in life did she get to personally experience.

Mimi went to college in her 50s after her children were grown. She earned her bachelor’s degree and soon after became a teacher. While applying for teaching positions locally, she was given the opportunity to teach English as a second language in Korea. While it was a year-long life experience she treasured, nothing was keeping her from her “grandbabies” any longer. Returning from Korea as an experienced teacher, she began a new journey, teaching for Ehrhart Academy at Girls’ Haven. Her Ehrhart family is certainly saddened by her passing. Her dedicated service, generosity, and kind spirit will be greatly missed. Mimi, after retirement, continued as a volunteer at the Academy and believed in the school and its staff, but mostly — just as as she did her own children and grandchildren — she believed in the kids.

Mimi loved to go just about anywhere. All you would have to do is mention you were thinking of going somewhere, and she was the first to say, “I am ready and I want to go.” She loved and frequently talked about road trips to Colorado, California, Washington D.C. and the Alaskan cruise she took with her brothers and sisters. At the time of her death, she had a reservation to accompany one of her daughters, son-in-law and grandson to Italy and was scheduled later in the summer for a mission trip to Honduras with her church. Truth be told, she was equally excited to go to an Astros game in Houston or out of town to see one of her grandchildren.

Mimi was a painter and a poet. Though not discovered by the creative world (yet), her family will treasure her paintings and her poems, and share them with generations to come.

On her last day, in her last moments on this earth, while picking up mail at her apartment complex, she saw a small group in the common area praying. She walked up to these neighbors, even as strangers, and told them the Lord told her to introduce herself and join in with them in prayer. After several minutes of sharing stories of her faith, her family and especially her grandchildren, Mimi prayed with the group one last time. As she left to go to her home, she suffered an unexpected brain aneurysm that took her mortal life, but she will live eternally with her Lord Jesus Christ, her parents, her brother Harrison and her son Wade in Heaven. She will be missed on this Earth but always remembered by her brothers and sisters, her children, and her children’s children. All who knew Patricia “Mimi” Wylie Whitmire will miss her, and those who never knew her have certainly been shortchanged.

Mimi is survived by her son, Mark Whitmire and his wife, Ai Thuy, of Houston; daughters Kristi Whitmire Dodd and her husband, Don, of Beaumont, Darla Whitmire Hearn of Port Neches, and daughter-in-law Elizabeth “Beth” Whitmire of Fort Worth; brothers Henry Wylie of Vidor, Robert “Bobby” Wylie and his wife, Diane, of Buna, and Warren Wylie of Vidor; sisters Bonnie Wylie Stephenson and husband, Karl, of Rose City, and Mary Wylie Tinsley and her husband, Larry, of Kirbyville; grandchildren Chase Hidalgo, Kail Hidalgo, Elizabeth Hearn-Ballenger and husband, Thomas, Kristofer Hearn, Erica Allmaguer, Bradley Hearn and wife, Jessica, Taylor Haymour-Dodd, Anthony Whitmire-VanAuken, Cullen Dodd, Emily Whitmire, William Gober, Mason Dodd, and Ruby Thuy Whitmire; great-grandchildren Selah, Issac and Levi Hearn, and a much anticipated fourth great-grandchild. Mimi had many nieces, nephews and great nieces — each and every one her very favorite — along with a host of extended family and friends.

Her parents and a son, Wade Arlen Whitmire, and brother, Harrison Wesley Wylie Jr, precede Mimi in death.