Mom was born on January 4, 1932 to Melvin and Essie Childress and was born at her Aunt Edna's Askins house in Sanco, Texas.
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She was raised on the Cortez Russell Ranch in the Friendship area of Coke County. Mom started her schooling at Sanco and graduated from Robert Lee High School in 1949. The senior class called themselves the 49's.
Mom loved music and wanted to have a piano and take lessons. She worked picking cotton and raising dogie lambs to save money for her first piano.
Mom met Les Copeland at church in Robert Lee and married him August 27, 1950. She worked for West Texas Utilities until Les and Bonita moved to Silver, Texas with their new baby daughter, Nita Gaye to work for Perkin and Prothro Oil Company. Their son Daryl was born in May 1956.
Mom taught music lessons at her home in Silver and also Robert Lee and Colorado City. Mom played the piano at Silver Baptist Church and the organ at Robert Lee Baptist Church for many years.
As the oil camps closed in Silver the family moved to Robert Lee in 1970. After Daryl and Gaye graduated from High School she attended Angelo State University. She loved college!
In June of 1976 she first became a Nana when John Caleb Williams was born. Jerrod, Holly and Tiffany were born soon after. She loved her grandkids and loved going to sporting events that they participated in.
Mom was active in the community. She was on the board that published the Coke County History books. Along with Wanda Smith they surveyed and notated all the cemeteries in Coke County and published this as a book in1990. Later she published the book A History of the Old Coke County Jail and Sheriffs.
Mom enjoyed participating in the Old Coke County Pageants for many years. She enjoyed participating in it with her husband and family.
Mom went on several mission trips with churches. She went to Brazil, Australia and the FiJi Islands. She loved the FiJi Islands and would have lived there if she could have.
Mom and Dad enjoyed their retirement years living across from Robert Lee High School. They enjoyed feeding the grandkids lunch every day and playing a game of ping pong with them before they went back to school. She cooked frito pie for her family before many home football games.
Mom was never bored or without activity. She loved to read, study the Bible and playing dominoes with the Blairs and the Prentices.
Mom was preceded in death by her husband, her beloved grandson John, her parents and two sisters. She is survived by many nieces, nephews, grandchildren, great grandchildren and many friends.
Graveside services will be held at 10:00 am, Monday, August 3, 2020, at Robert Lee Cemetery. Services are under the direction of Shaffer Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that memorials be sent to the Robert Lee Baptist Church or the Coke County Historical Committee.