'Counting On' Grandma Mary Duggar Died of Accidental Drowning

Counting On star and grandmother Mary Duggar's cause of death has been determined to be an accidental drowning, authorities confirmed to PEOPLE.

Washington County Coroner Roger W. Morris confirmed the cause of Mary's death at 78 to the outlet Wednesday, saying she had slipped leading up to the drowning.

Radar Online was first to report Wednesday that a 911 call was made on Sunday for a "possible drowning" at Mary's home in Arkansas.

"Call came in of a possible drowning at [address redacted]..that's [address redacted]. Big house in the back … older woman, 14 echo — unconscious. Medics are responding," the dispatcher said in a call obtained by the outlet.

The TLC family announced the sudden death of the family's matriarch on their Facebook earlier this week.

"We are so sad to share that Grandma Duggar (Mary) passed away Sunday afternoon, June 9th, 2019. 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," the announcement began. "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."

"Grandma Mary Duggar has been on the TLC shows, 19 Kids & Counting and Counting On with her family for over 15 years. She is greatly loved and will be missed so very much!" they continued. "She lived a tremendous life as a follower of Christ, a wife, a devoted mother, a loving mother-in-law, and a much-loved grandmother."

The family's post concluded, "We deeply appreciate your prayers for our family and all who loved Mary during this time."


Many of the Counting On stars shared their own tribute to Mary, with Anna Duggar writing soon after the announcement, "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."

Photo credit: Twitter/Jessa Duggar