Mary Augusta Biddle Scheetz, 98, of Gladwyne, a mother, socialite, and civic volunteer, died Friday, Jan. 15, at Dunwoody Village in Newtown Square.
Known as "Dusty," Mrs. Scheetz was born in Riverton, Burlington County, the daughter of Henry Canby Biddle and Margaret Seton Fleming Biddle. She was a descendant of the Owen Biddle branch of a family long prominent in Philadelphia civic affairs.
In 1935, she graduated from the Agnes Irwin School, where her mother had taught.
A debutante and Pond's Cold Cream model, Mrs. Scheetz was featured in an advertisement in 1937 as "Miss Mary Augusta Biddle."
"Getting ready for a dance, for a canter, or for a morning out of doors with her spaniel, Miss Biddle always begins with Pond's," the ad read. The cream, she said in her endorsement, gave her skin "a bright and vital look."
That year, she married Philadelphia lawyer William Henry Snyder Jr.
He died in 1951 at age 41, leaving her a widow with three young children. In 1952, she married Gordon Stouffer, chairman of Stouffer Foods, who adopted her children. The family lived in Cleveland.
Stouffer died in 1956, soon after the couple returned home from an African animal-capture safari for the Cleveland Zoo.
In 1960, she returned to the Philadelphia area, where she married architect William Cramp Scheetz Jr. He died in 1996.
"A gracious and generous woman, Mrs. Scheetz faced her many losses in life with exceptional courage and fortitude," her family said in a tribute. She never complained.
Her son, Christopher F. Stouffer, described his mother as "the ultimate survivor. She was an institution unto herself."
"She got along with people really well. She gave a lot of parties - she was a consummate hostess. When people were with her, they felt special," he said.
A woman with a strong sense of civic duty, Mrs. Scheetz volunteered to serve on the Women's Boards of the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and the Philadelphia Orchestra.
She was active in a program sponsored by her church, Christ Church Ithan, that provided help with reading for students at Kearny Elementary School in Philadelphia's Northern Liberties section.
She was a past member of the Merion Cricket Club, the Sedgeley Club, and the Acorn Club. A faithful reunion volunteer for the Agnes Irwin School, she received its Alumnae Award in 2015 on the occasion of her 80th reunion.
Besides her son, Mrs. Scheetz is survived by daughters Elizabeth "Lissa" Stouffer Thompson and Mary Seton Gibbons; stepchildren Alice Scheetz Longman and John Wood Scheetz; seven grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; three nephews; and a niece. A grandson died earlier.
Plans for a memorial service were pending. Interment will be private.
Donations may be made to the Agnes Irwin School, 275 S. Ithan Ave., Rosemont, Pa. 19010.