Mary Immaculatta (May) Hildenbrand, 69 of Franklin, TN, entered into eternity on Wednesday morning, January 26, 2022.
Mary was born December 11, 1952 in Lansing, MI and was one of three children born to Earl and Virginia (White) May. Mary had a small family growing up, however. Her brother was already an adult when she was born, and her father and sister died while Mary was a small child. Mary would later find her family with the Hildenbrands.
Mary went to Everett High School and had a locker near an older boy, David Hildenbrand. Mary and David both told others that they each thought the other was "cute," but they did not speak until at a party Mary's junior year. Mary was a bold woman who spoke her mind, so it is no surprise that she was the one to initiate their first date. From that point on, it was clear they were meant to be together. In 1972, less than a year from Mary's high school graduation, the two married. In 1973, they welcomed their first child. This April would have marked Mary and David's 50th wedding anniversary.
During her years with David, Mary was a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother. She had found her family and was fiercely supportive and protective of them. Even when money was tight, she made sure her children had what they needed and wanted. Christmas at her house was always impressive with presents stacked around the tree, color-coded in gold, red, and green for each of her children and stockings for every family pet over the years.
Mary had an impressive analytical mind and an unbreakable character. She worked primarily as a real estate agent, but it was more than a career. She used her expertise to help friends and family, including all three of her children, during life transitions. Mary never stopped learning. In her free time, she enjoyed researching genealogy, science, and technology. She combined her creativity and intelligence throughout her life in projects as large as designing two of the Hildenbrands' homes and planning weddings to as small as sewing blankets and outfits for her grandchildren. Even as her health declined in later years, her first thoughts were always about taking care of her family.
Mary was also a woman of deep faith. While raised Catholic, she joined the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Church shortly after her marriage and remained an active and devoted believer until her death. She was a source of strength and love for many, known for her wisdom, knowledge, and comfort. She served others throughout her life, never seeking or expecting anything in return.
Mary is survived by her loving husband: David Hildenbrand, of Franklin, TN; their daughter: Shelley Daly and husband William of Columbia, TN; their son: Jason Hildenbrand of Antioch, TN; their daughter: Sarah Esberger and husband Travis of Murfreesboro, TN; and their two grandchildren: Lydia May Daly and Elijah Esberger.
Her family will receive friends from 5:00-6:00 PM on Friday, February 11, 2022 at Christ Our Savior Lutheran Church. A service to celebrate Mary's life and entrance into heaven will begin at 6:00 PM.