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Memorials: Pima Monthly Meeting

George Mairs

Date of birth

Jan. 19, 1941

Date of death

Dec. 14, 2022


Pima Monthly Meeting

Memorial minute

George Mairs died in gratitude on December 14, 2022. He was born in Boston, the child of Shirley and Bill Mairs, on January 19th, 1941. George was married to Nancy Pedrick Mairs for 53 years, and they have two beloved children, Anne Mairs and Matthew Mairs. Anne is married to Eric Peterson, whom she met in the Peace Corps, and they are the parents of George’s three grandchildren: Colin Peterson, who is deceased, and Trinity Mairs and Molly Peterson.

George’s son, Matthew Mairs, is married to Fendy Chen, whom he met in Shanghai. George and Nancy also adopted Ron DuGay, who was an inmate at a juvenile detention center where George worked. George said his only regret in life was that his generation hadn’t been better stewards of the world they are leaving to their grandchildren.

George graduated from Brown and Boston University and was honored to teach many, many students over thirty years, first at a prep school in Boston and then at various schools in Tucson, including Amphi High and Salpointe.

He was also a worker for peace and justice issues, first as a Catholic Worker, then as an advocate for the needs of seniors and as a friend to Death Row inmates, among other causes. George was a caregiver for over thirty years as Nancy’s multiple sclerosis progressed to the point where she became a quadriplegic. At the same time the two of them kept an open house in which many found welcome for a day or a year. Finally, Mary DeCamp joined the family, helping to care for Nancy as she declined and then staying in community with George.

In his last years George fell in love with Roselyn Thompson, a Diné elder, upon whose death George inherited a Navajo family.

George stumbled upon a spiritual path both as a member of Community of Christ in the Desert and at Pima Monthly Meeting, the Quakers. To remember George you could help out at the Casa Maria Catholic Worker House and Soup Kitchen or at Pima Council on Aging.

Pima Meeting adds the following:

George was a humble elder of Pima Meeting, becoming a member in September of 2019 and attending regularly for at least 5 years before that. He served on our Peace and Social Concerns Committee, clerking it for the past several years and initiating a number of projects in the Meeting. He was also serving on the Ministry and Care Committee at the time of his death. George served as the Meeting liaison to the West University Neighborhood Association and volunteered for other ad hoc committee work as need arose. He looked for opportunities to support creative projects, and was always ready and eager to reach out to others, make connections, build bridges, and share experiences and insights. For example, when the Islamic Center in Tucson was vandalized in 2018, George reached out to offer support and arranged several programs of mutual visitations between those members and Pima Meeting. His presence is missed.

Approved at Pima Monthly Meeting for Worship with Concern for Business 8th Month, 13th Day, 2023