Baylor University Mourns Passing of Longtime Advocate Kate McLane Dimmitt, B.B.A. ’56, Baylor Legacy Award Recipient
WACO, Texas (Nov. 20, 2017) – Baylor University is mourning the passing of Kate McLane Dimmitt, B.B.A. ’56, a longtime Baylor advocate and 2014 Baylor Legacy Award recipient who died Nov. 17 in Temple. She was 83.
A celebration of Dimmitt’s life will take place at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 21, in the Creekside Center at Temple Bible Church, 3205 Oakview Drive in Temple.
“The Baylor University Family extends our deepest sympathy to the family and friends of Kate McLane Dimmitt, whose great love for the University is reflected throughout our campus and in our students for whom she has made a Baylor education possible,” said Baylor President Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D. “Kate’s legacy includes her family’s gift of the McLane Carillon, whose melodies ringing from atop Pat Neff Hall are a treasured part of our daily campus life. She shared her lifelong love for Baylor through student scholarships, creating a lasting legacy for future generations to experience the transformational education that impacted her so profoundly. We are truly grateful for her extraordinary service and philanthropy to Baylor. Our thoughts and prayers are with her brother, Drayton, her daughter Katie and son-in-law, Jimmy, and their children, Martha and Sam. We join them in remembering the remarkable life of Kate Dimmitt.”
Dimmitt was born in Cameron, Texas, to Robert Drayton McLane and Gladys Blaylock McLane. While growing up in Cameron, she remembered her church receiving visits from the Baylor Religious Hour Choir, which greatly influenced her perception of Baylor. On a visit to campus, Dimmitt was struck by its beauty and friendly atmosphere. Following her graduation from C.H. Yoe High School, she began her family’s longstanding tradition with Baylor University in 1952, when she enrolled and resided in Alexander Hall.
Following her graduation from Baylor in 1956, Dimmitt moved to Houston, Texas, where she met Malcolm Ray “Mac” Dimmitt. The two married in 1958 and welcomed daughter, Katie McLane Dimmitt, four years later. Following Mac’s unexpected death in 1970, Kate navigated life with her young daughter with grace and courage, as the two formed and maintained a steadfast mother-daughter team.
Upon her retirement, Dimmitt moved to Temple, where she became deeply involved in community life, including her membership of and engagement with First Presbyterian Church, and she enjoyed lasting relationships with her many neighbors and friends. Family and friends lovingly remember Kate as a woman of unwavering faith, warm and welcoming, humorous and light-hearted, a cheerful storyteller, loyal friend and a sister in Christ.
Dimmitt continued her lifelong connection to Baylor through her extraordinary service and philanthropy to the University, for which she was honored in 2014 with the Baylor Legacy Award. She also was named Distinguished Baylor Woman of Central Texas in 2005.
One of her favorite Baylor-related activities was getting together with her former classmates – a group that called themselves “The Baylor Chicks of ’56” – for such Baylor events as Spring Fling.
Dimmitt and her family gave the 48-bell, 22-ton McLane Carillon to Baylor in 1988. She also supported student scholarships and McLane Stadium construction, among other pursuits. She was a member of the Endowed Scholarship Society and the 1845 Society and also served on the President’s Scholarship Initiative Steering Committee and the Baylor Development Council.
Her family is made up of fellow Bears, including daughter Katie Garrison (B.S.Ed. ’85), son-in-law Jimmy Garrison (B.B.A. ’85) and grandchildren, Martha Garrison (B.S. ’12) and Sam Garrison (B.B.A. ’17) and brother, Drayton McLane Jr. (B.B.A. ’58).
Speaking in 2014 about her lifelong connection to Baylor, Dimmitt told Baylor Magazine:
“For our family, being part of the larger Baylor family has really been the underpinning, the way we have lived our lives, the company we’ve kept. It’s a connection that our family shares without really talking about it. It’s been who we are,” Dimmitt said. “We see the importance of the ones that have come before us that have given us inspiration and love for Baylor. And, you want to create that same inspiration, love for those that follow after you in your family, and through Baylor scholarships, for others as well.
“Together, we are creating a legacy for the love of Baylor in future generations,” she said. “What a delight it is to meet the young recipients of your scholarship. They are all extremely grateful and gracious and wonderful. It’s great that they come and learn to love Baylor as you did, and then they take that love out to the world.”
Dimmitt is survived by her daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren, her brother and sister-in-law, and cherished cousins, nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband; sister, Jo Ann McClaren; and her parents.
Memorial contributions may be made in Kate Dimmitt’s honor to McLane Children’s Medical Center, Baylor Scott and White, Central Texas Foundation, MS-20-S103, 2401 S. 31st St., Temple, Texas 76508, or to Baylor University, One Bear Place #97050, Waco, Texas 76798-7050.
ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY
Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 17,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.