Mary Jo Wolcott Wilson, 79, died Sept. 30 due to complications from a long battle with Alzheimer’s. She was surrounded by her loving family. A long-time resident of New Canaan, she was living at the Cape Heritage retirement home in Sandwich, Massachusetts.

She is survived by her three children: Elizabeth Jane (Lisa) Wilson of Waltham, Massachusetts, Bruce Garner Wilson, Jr. of New Canaan, and Mary Jo Wilson von der Heyde of Sandwich, Massachusetts; her four grandchildren: Maxson and Charlie Wilson, and Christina and Peter von der Heyde. She is also survived by her sister, Jane Wolcott Ready of Norwalk and Jonathan Giles Wolcott of Barnstead, New Hampshire. She was predeceased by her brother, James Lister Wolcott of Ocala, Florida.

Ms. Wilson was raised in Darien and attended Westover School, Vassar College and Katherine Gibbs School. She was introduced to society in 1953 at the Darien-New Canaan Autumn Cotillion and the Debutante Cotillion and Christmas Ball in New York. In 1957 she married Bruce Garner Wilson from Darien. Although divorced in 1974 they remained good friends throughout their lives.

Ms. Wilson was musically talented. She sang in the Glee Club at Westover and was a member of a small singing group, “the Gold Dusters,” at Vassar that performed at many of the Ivy League colleges. In later years, she was a member of the Blue Notes, the Junior League singing group. An accomplished pianist, she played the organ at Westover and later at Saint Mark’s Parish where she taught Sunday School for a number of years. She was a member of Family and Children’s Aid and volunteered her time for the semi-annual sales at the Ziegler estate and later Roton Point. While her children were in school, she supported their activities by attending all their events whether sports or Walter Schalk dance reviews. And, in fact, in 1977 and 1978 she was the sole publisher of the New Canaan Rams Football Guide.

She enjoyed a long career, which began in New Canaan, working for the local law firms of Hicks and Sturges. In 1977 she joined Conoco, Inc., when the company was headquartered in Stamford. She was the Executive Administrator and Paralegal to the VP General Counsel and after three years she became an officer of the company in the position of Corporate Secretary.

Throughout her life, she enjoyed her family and took great pride in all their accomplishments.

Friends and family will gather for a memorial service to be held on Saturday, Nov. 28 at 11 a.m. at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, New Canaan.

Memorial donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association at

— by The Darien Times