Following are excerpts from a tribute to Mary Elizabeth “Mitzi” Gaunt Roberts, written by her TWU classmate and later roommate, Mona Dean Young Sizer, Class of ’55. Mona wrote this tribute after Mitzi’s death in 1998.
“I heard Mary Elizabeth Gaunt before I ever met her. She was standing beside a piano in the living room of Smith-Carroll Hall, the junior dormitory at Texas State College for Women. The year was 1954. She was singing. She and three or four other girls including the pianist were singing a popular son of the day, or perhaps it was an old familiar song like ‘Shine on Harvest Moon’ or ‘Stardust.’ ” ……
“I thought she was absolutely wonderful.”
“She had such a clear, natural voice that when the junior class did the class stunt, Mitzi had one of the most important roles. She played the LION. I can still see her in my mind’s eye pacing across the stage, shaking the magnificent mane of her costume, exhorting all the other ‘Quadrupeds’ in the circus to consider leaving it because ‘back in our habitats, we weren’t doing so bad.’ As her beautiful, powerful voice belted out across the auditorium, Mitzi made you believe.”
“The juniors won stunts that year. We were all ecstatic. Mitzi particularly because being the best mattered terribly to her.” …..
“In the summer after graduation in 1955, I was finishing my masters in English when I asked Mitzi, who was graduating late, to room with me. We spent six wonderful weeks together.”
“Then we came to Dallas together where our friendship continued. She decided my English teacher’s vocabulary was superior to hers, so she took a self-improvement course. She already had so many skills that I didn’t possess and wouldn’t if I studied another ten years, but she wanted to be better.”
“I was very sad when she went off to Carlisle, Massachusetts. I was afraid I’d never see her again. But with Mitzi, if you were a friend, you were a friend for life.”….
” My friend Mary Elizabeth Gaunt Roberts was the most versatile of women with an abundance of talent, of good sense, of humor, and of sensitivity.”
“I’ve lived in the world for more than forty years knowing that Mitzi was just a phone call away. The fact that she’s not there from now-on leaves me with a lot of life to live unsupported.”