Mitzi Louise Green Malone, 87, of Concord, passed away on July 17, 2022, at her home in Concord, North Carolina. Mitzi was an exemplary person who leaves behind a legacy of love, faith, generosity, and service above self. She was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother, organist, and teacher. She was born on April 3, 1935 to Worth Bunyan Green and Katharin Hartsell Green and grew up in Midland, North Carolina. She graduated from Bethel High School where she was valedictorian of her class and went on to study at Queens College. In 1957, she married John Hugh Malone Jr., who was at the time studying medicine at Duke University. Hugh and Mitzi loved one another immeasurably and were married for sixty-five years.
Mitzi began studying piano as a young child under the tutelage of Eugenia Brumley. She was a prodigy and assumed the pianist role at Bethel Methodist Church at age twelve. She then went on to become an accomplished organist, studying first at East Tennessee State College, then at Birmingham-Southern College, and then for a year at Duke Chapel, under organist Mildred Hendrix. Mitzi then went on to play the Flentrop organ at First Presbyterian Church in Concord, North Carolina, for thirty years, touching the lives and hearts of many through beautiful and inspiring music. As Mitzi said in 1997 upon her retirement, in an article for the Independent Tribune, playing the organ was her calling--‘It hasn’t been just a job, it’s been a religious experience. I can’t even begin to put into words how special it has been.’ As countless people will attest to, listening to Mitzi play the organ and piano was also a spiritual experience. After she retired from playing the organ, she continued to contribute to music at First Presbyterian as a member of the church choir.
In addition to her legacy of inspiring others through her music, Mitzi was a music teacher in the Cabarrus County public elementary schools from 1969 to 1995, adored by students and colleagues as a friend to all. She cherished her role as the mother of two children, Arabella and John, and the grandmother of four grandchildren, whose lives she shaped in immeasurable ways. She was also an incredible cook, who loved sharing her culinary creations with friends and family and left a legacy of treasured recipes. She enjoyed time with family, gardening, taking solace in nature, wildlife, bird watching, walks at the beach, hikes in the mountains, singing, reading, sewing, working puzzles, and playing with her Pomeranian dogs.
Mitzi was an immensely intelligent, giving, loving, welcoming, and positive person. Like Mother Teresa of Calcutta, a person she deeply admired, she believed that ‘peace begins with a smile,’ and that ‘if you judge people, you have no time to love them.’ Mitzi put these words into action in her daily life. She will always be remembered for what she gave the world, without expecting anything in return.
Mitzi was preceded in death by her parents, Worth and Katharin Green, her brother, John Bunyan Green II, and her sister Katharin ‘Kappy’ Green Sides. She is survived by her husband, Dr. John Hugh Malone Jr., her sister Margaret Green Oktavec, her daughter Dr. Arabella Malone- Trahey (Dr. Thomas Trahey), her son Dr. John Green Malone (Nancy Hartsell Malone), and her grandchildren Dr Erin Trahey (Sean Bourelle), Tara Trahey (Dr. Chris Kennedy), Malcolm Malone, and Olivia Malone. Also surviving are many nieces and nephews.
A musical celebration of her life will be held at First Presbyterian Church in Concord on September 17, 2022 at 11am. The family asks that donations be made in Mitzi’s memory to First Presbyterian Church of Concord Music Program or to organizations that she supported including the National Audubon Society, the National Wildlife Federation, the Nature Conservancy, or WDAV Classical Public Radio. Online condolences can be given at www.hartsellfh.com