How Did Mary Duggar Die? New Details On The Death Of The Duggar Family Matriarch At 78

Mary Duggar, mother of 19 Kids star JimBob Duggar died this weekend.

How Did Mary Duggar Die? New Details On The Death Of The Duggar Family Matriarch Instagram

The famously fertile Duggar family has lost an important person in all their lives. Mary Duggar, the mother of Jim Bob Duggar of 19 Kids and Counting fame has passed away at the age of 78.

Mary was the mother of two children, grandmother to 21, and great-grandmother to 13. Her family is only saying that she died suddenly and hasn’t released any more information about what happened. For the time being, the family is sharing warm memories of their much loved matriarch. How did Mary Duggar die? Read on for all the details.


1 . Obituary

On the Duggar family’s official Facebook page, they posted an announcement about Mary's passing and spoke affectionately of her. In particular, the highly religious family talked about her deep faith, saying: “Mary Lester Duggar grew up in Farmington, Arkansas and was married almost 50 years to J.L. (Jimmy Lee) Duggar who preceded her in death. Mary found great joy in sharing her love for Jesus and her own story of how at age 15 she asked Christ to forgive her for her sins. It was at that time she committed the rest of her life to live for Him, a commitment she kept with devotion. She loved to share with others how they too could be forgiven of their sins, live a fulfilling life as a Christian, and one day spend eternity in heaven.”


The family also mentioned that she had a successful career in real estate, writing: “Mary Duggar was also a successful real estate broker who owned Good Neighbor Realty and was noted in Northwest Arkansas for being the broker who put together the property sale for the John Q. Hammons Holiday Inn & Convention Center in Springdale.” 

The family remembers Mary fondly.

2. TV Grandma

The entire Duggar clan lived in the same part of Arkansas and Mary Duggar was probably best known for her appearance on 19 Kids and Counting as well as Counting On, shows that focused on her son Jim Bob and his wife Michelle, as well as their 19 children and their spouses and children. According to the family Facebook page, the shows have been on the air for 15 years and Mary has been featured on them during that time.



A post shared by The Duggar Family (@duggarfam) on May 12, 2019 at 11:32am PDT

Mary was popular among fans.


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3. Remembrance

The younger generation of Duggars have been on social media sharing warm memories of their grandmother. The Today Show reports that Jill Duggar Dillard wrote: “My heart breaks. My grandma died suddenly today! She was an amazing woman of God and such a great example to so many! Grandma, you are greatly missed by all who knew you! She was a feisty, incredible woman who always took the time to talk about Jesus with everyone she knew! I know she was ready to check outta here and get her new body in heaven before the old one started giving her too much trouble! We miss you so much!!”

Joy Duggar Forsyth and her husband Austin posted to their shared account: ““Grandma Duggar… She was a strong woman, role model, godly counselor… and my favorite person to watch The Price is Right show with. She is GREATLY loved & missed! Thank you all for your kind words and prayers for our family!”

Anna Duggar, who is married to Jim Bob and Michelle’s eldest son Josh wrote: “Great-Grandma Duggar went to heaven today to be with Jesus! What an awesome woman of faith and such a loving example of God’s love. She was a true soul-winner and loved everyone she met, telling them to turn from sin and trust Jesus for salvation! Miss her soooo much and we cherish each moment we were blessed to spend together! Lots of tears being shed here — grateful for all the prayers!” Josh and Anna no longer appear on the family’s tv shows after Josh was implicated in molesting his sisters as a teen and later in life admitted having affairs and a pornography addiction.



A post shared by Anna Duggar (@annaduggar) on Jun 9, 2019 at 9:05pm PDT

Anna Duggar will miss her husband's grandmother.

RELATED:  Are Josh And Anna Duggar Divorcing?

4. Preceded in death

Mary Duggar’s husband passed away more than 10 years ago, according to The Heavy.  In his obituary from the time, it mentioned that he enjoyed making business deals: “He loved buying and selling property, cars, and making “big” trades,” the tribute says. “Among many of his real estate transactions, he sold sites for the Springdale Holiday Inn & Convention Center, McDonald’s on U.S. 412, Heritage Funeral Home and the new Tamales Restaurant coming soon on 48th Street. He was an incredible salesman.”


Business dealings are something his son JimB ob and his children have emulated in their own professional lives. Many of them engaged in real estate “flipping” and buying and selling cars. In some cases, they have gotten in trouble with regulators, such as when Josh was recently cited for running a used car lot without a permit.

Mary had 13 great-grandchildren.


5. Cause of death

The family hasn’t said anything about how the 78-year-old matriarch of the enormous clan died. However, the Facebook fan page “Duggar Family News: Life is not all pickles and hairspray” posted that Mary had been having health problems since the end of 2018. A post from yesterday read: “I discovered that Mary did suffer a stroke on December 30, 2018. I noticed that she wasn't as active with the family this year and was wondering about her health. I'll let you know if I find out anything else. She apparently did go to church on Sunday morning so her death did happen very suddenly.” In a follow up, the page administrator wrote: “It gets sadder. According to a source Mary was found floating in the pool at her home which is near the big house. The coroner was seen taking her away. This happened around 5:00pm. She was not very stable and probably just tripped or had another stroke.” 

Fan pages are speculating on what happened to Mary.

We send our sympathies to the Duggar family at this sad time.


Rebekah Kuschmider has been writing about celebrities, pop culture, entertainment, and politics since 2010. Her work has been seen at Ravishly, Babble, Scary Mommy, The Mid, Redbook online, and The Broad Side. She is the creator of the blog Stay at Home Pundit and she is a cohost of the weekly podcast The More Perfect Union.