When psychotherapist and activist Mallory Crawford got divorced, she didn't switch back to her maiden name. Instead, she looked to her family's history.
"[Crawford] was very powerful and reminded her of her Viking heritage," said Joy Mulholland, her caregiver for about two years.
Mallory Crawford of Mount Washington died of a heart attack Tuesday. She was 72.
Ms. Mulholland said she was initially drawn to Ms. Crawford because of the "crazy ad" she'd posted on Craigslist for a caregiver. She listed about 20 requirements, such as someone who could sew, didn't smoke and was attentive to details.
"She was ... unique," Ms. Mulholland said. "She didn't put on airs. There was no falsehood in her. She just was who she was."
Ms. Crawford attended W.C. Mepham School in New York and went on to study Spanish and philosophy at Barnard College. She worked briefly as a translator, but her main career was as a trained psychotherapist and counselor. During the 1960s and '70s, Ms. Crawford worked in a crisis center and helped battered women, Ms. Mulholland said.
Later in life, about two decades ago, she came to Pittsburgh after her daughter attended Carnegie Mellon University. Here, she founded the nonprofit Earth Mother Enterprises to educate people about natural parenting. Ms. Crawford avidly recycled, Ms. Mulholland said.
"If it couldn't be recycled, it had to be reused. If it couldn't be reused, it was re-purposed. If it couldn't be re-purposed, she didn't buy it," she said, adding that a month's worth of trash for Ms. Crawford could be just a chip bag.
She ate only low-impact foods, mostly organic, and loved eating out. During January, she would eat at high-end restaurants two or three times a week to celebrate her birthday month.
Ms. Crawford frequented art galleries and museums, enjoyed improv classes and philosophy, hosted themed board game nights for Mensa and frequently attended Uncommon Board Game Night at Brew and MIX @ SIX. She volunteered for LGBT organizations and studied Brazilian Portuguese for fun.
"She really liked interacting with people of all walks of life," Ms. Mulholland said. "She was wonderfully eccentric and a light that will be missed."
Ms. Crawford is survived by a daughter, Alma Whitten of Wales, United Kingdom; a son, Amedeo Cacciutto of New York; and a sister, Eleanor Barrett of California.
A graveside service and burial will take place at 12:30 p.m. Monday in Penn Forest Natural Burial Park in Verona.
Contributions in Ms. Crawford's name can be made to the Women's Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh, the Animal Rescue League or Dreams of Hope.
Lexi Belculfine: firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-263-1878.