Casey Mars was a mother, wife and avid Ole Miss fan, a regular in the Grove with her family and friends. She won a nearly seven-year battle with cancer on Saturday inspiring others to the end. From left, daughter Mary Montgomery, husband Adam and boys Alex, Jax and Maddox.
Casey Mars was a mother, wife and avid Ole Miss fan, a regular in the Grove with her family and friends. She won a nearly seven-year battle with cancer on Saturday inspiring others to the end. From left, daughter Mary Montgomery, husband Adam and boys Alex, Jax and Maddox.

Sweet, beautiful, strong and courageous, known as a fighter and an inspiration to many, Casey Mars’ nearly seven-year battle with cancer ended bravely on Saturday because she never stopped fighting to live.

Mars, 41, died surrounded by friends and family at her Philadelphia home. She leaves a husband and four children.




“Her hair became her signature!!!” wrote Shannon Harrison Posey in a Facebook post on Sunday. “Spiked or colored or wigged or bald, she rocked it all!!”

A large crowd at The First United Methodist Church for her funeral service on Monday stood as a testament to the impact the Madden native had in this community.

She was a medical technologist at Laird Hospital in Union, but spent a lot of time in support of her four children, their friends and their friends’ families.

Despite her illness, she was everywhere — an active member of First Methodist and a fixture at youth baseball practices and school functions. She tailgated in the Grove and, as a fitness enthusiast, could be seen running around town most mornings.

After receiving her diagnosis, Casey’s heroic battle with the metastic breast cancer that eventually took her life became a rallying point for the entire community.

Mars refused to resign herself to the margins. She still ran every morning, just as she had before, and adopted the mantra “Do Work.” 

She sought treatment in Meridian so she could maintain her “Supermom” routine and spend more time with her husband Adam, daughter Mary Montgomery and sons Maddox, Alex and Jax.

It was Mary Montgomery who encouraged her mother to eschew wigs after she started chemotherapy and instead embrace bright lipstick and large ear hoops for the “rockstar” look.

She arranged for family trips and continued to travel to Oxford and her beloved Ole Miss for sporting events. She vacationed in Florida and cheered as loud as anyone for the Mississippi Phillies, Maddox’s baseball team, whose members served as honorary pallbearers at Monday’s funeral.

She ran marathons and participated in the Heart O’ Dixie Triathlon. She set new personal goals and then achieved them. She shared tailgating recipes as the Neshoba Democrat’s Cook of the Week just two months ago.

In short, Casey Mars lived the last seven years of her life just with just as much enthusiasm as she did those first 35, and perhaps more.

The well-wishes for the family and testaments to Casey Mars’ perseverance have been pouring in on social media since her death.

“We will all miss her dearly,” said Amy Kilpatrick Taylor, a long-time friend of Mars’. “She taught us so much and touched so many of us in ways she never knew.”

Lynda Gayle Robertson said she knew Mars had already hit Heaven’s streets of gold running.

“Although I didn’t know her my entire life, the years that I did know her, I love her and she taught me a lot about life,” Robertson said. “She fought the cancer… head on, she never wavered and, most importantly, she never gave up.”

Paige Lashley, who worked with Mars at Laird, said the first thing she noticed about Casey was her confidence and grace.

“She exuded such a passion for life,” Lashley wrote on Facebook. “Cancer came and still she persevered with so much bravery and courage. I remember telling her how inspiring she was to me, how she never gave up and how she worked every day to #DoWork and fight. She didn’t lose her race. She won THE race!” 

See the full obituary on page 6A.