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Lois Marie Williams Welch

Lois Marie (Williams) Welch, 99, passed away June 19, 2015. She was born in Piggott, Arkansas on June 21, 1915 to Leslie Carl and Amy Clemintine (Mann) Williams. Her family moved to Illinois when she was a child. She graduated from Bunker Hill High School, received an Associate’s Degree from McMurray College in Jacksonville, Illinois, and completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Shertliff College in Alton, Illinois. She taught two years in a one-room rural school in Illinois.

Lois married James Richard Welch on September 5, 1938. After the tornado that struck and destroyed their home in Bunker Hill in 1948, they moved to East Alton, Illinois. There, Lois returned to teaching in East Alton and South Roxana, a nearby community. She completed her Master’s Degree in Education and retired from South Roxana as an elementary school principal in 1980. Her career in education spanned 36 years.

After retirement, Lois became very active in the Sweet Sounds group of St. Paul’s Methodist Church, which visited nursing homes on a regular basis. She created her own characters, wrote her own scripts, made her own costumes, and performed at each nursing home that group visited. She remained active in that ministry until she was 97. She was also active in the Christian Women’s Club, Delta Kappa Gamma educational sorority, Bible Coffee Fellowships, and the Kairos Prison Ministry. At the age of 97 she moved to Iowa Park, Texas to live with her daughter and son-in-law. She loved living with her family in Texas.
She is preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Richard, of 63 years and her sister, Carmen Lueking.

She is survived by her daughter, Carole Venhaus and husband, Tom; her granddaughter, Amanda Galliton and husband, Justin; and her great-granddaughter, Kayleigh Galliton, all of Iowa Park, Texas; a sister, Londa Weller of Bethalto, Illinois; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be held in the parlor of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church (East Alton, Illinois) from 1:00-2:00pm, Thursday, July 16, 2015, with a Celebration of Life service to follow.

Memorials may be given in her name to the First United Methodist Church renovation fund (201 E. Bank St., Iowa Park, Texas, 76367), to Kairos Outside of Wichita Falls (PO Box 9245, Wichita Falls, Texas 76308), or Glorious Praise Fellowship c/o St. Paul’s United Methodist Church.

Messages to the family may be sent to

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