Meadie was born March 15, 1917 in the Fargo Community, north of Vernon, Texas, to E.H. "Bud" and Esther (Haynes) Thomas, longtime residents of Wilbarger County. She was the third of five children and is the third to complete her journey of life on this earth.
Meadie was taught the fundamentals of music by her late father, who had been an instructor at North Texas Normal School in Denton at the turn of the 19th and 20th century, and was also taught by "Aunt" Jenny Lovelace. She became an accomplished pianist at a very early age. After overcoming a severe illness in her young life, she managed to be in the first graduating class of Northside High School (1937) and ranked as Salutorian. She was pianist for the Fargo Methodist Church, which her father and two brothers help build, and in which Irl Holt still ministers and Carla Thomas Clayton performs accompaniments. While playing the piano for school and church functrions, she was noticed, introduced, and married to Charles Folley. After a whirlwind courtship, they were married on November 13, 1937, in Frederick, Oklahoma, and moved to Davidson, Oklahoma, shortly thereafter where they resided until 1962. While in Davidson, she performed accompaniments at the Methodist church alongside another talented musician, Ruby Reeser Jameson. She also played for large gospel "Singing conventions" which were held over the entire region of Southern Oklahoma and North Texas that were very popular in the fifties. She also accompanied the "Stamps Ozark Quartet" and other various well-known singing groups of the time period. She gave her last recital at Merrill Gardens at the age of 88.
As a wife and mother in the Davidson community, she participated in many social functions such as "room mother", Sunday School teacher, Bible School teacher, and Women's Missionary Society. She tutored her daughter to play the piano and sing. Eventually, a group developed into a trio called the "Tunettes" consisting of Vivian (Hamm) Thompson, the late Patsy Lane, and Meadie's daughter, Mary Esther. The three pretty girls who could sing with a style like the McGuire Sisters, accompanied by an accomplished piano player, wowed many groups around the southern Oklahoma and North Texas area for several years before they all went their separate ways. Meadie retreated to the farm, became employed by the Vernon Manufacturing Company, and attempted to complete the training of her red-necked boy child. Considering what she had to work with, she did a pretty good job. She and Charles moved to Vernon in 1962. Since she had made many new friends in Vernon, she quickly became a member of what is now known as the Faith United Methodist Church. As usual in that setting, she began to accompany the singing, and eventually met all the individuals who were to become her dearly beloved church family. She performed in that capacity until December 2004 and then, and only then, reluctantly stepped aside because of physical and mental limitations.
Meadie is survived by her daughter and family, namely: Randall and Mary Christopher Collins of Vernon, Texas; grandson, Chris and Cindy Christopher, and great-grandson, Joshua and Zachary, of Quanah, Texas; grandson David and Karen Christopher and great-grandchildren, Richard, Charla, Kimmi Kay, and Levi of Phoenix, Arizona;,her son and family, namely: Glen Allen and Nancy Folley of Spring, Texas; grandson, Gregory Allen Folley of Mesa, Arizona; grandson, Roger Allen and Jodi Folley, and great-grandson's, Reese Allen, Travis Allen and Wyatt Allen also of Mesa, Arizona; her two younger sisters, Mrs. Beryle Luedtke Cannafax of Wichita Falls, Texas and MsAlice Scott Reese of Vernon, Texas. She is also survived by several nieces and nephews and many Thomas cousins residing in the areas of Murfresboro, Tennessee, Denton, Texas, Vernon, Texas and Mountainair, New Mexico, who are direct issue of her father's 22 brothers and sisters.
Meadie was preceded in death by her parents, "Bud" Thomas (1871-1962), and Esther Thomas (1890-1974), her husband of 56 years, Charles A. Folley (1917-1994), her second husband of six months, Herbert Mason, and her two older brothers, Richard Thomas (1913-1992) of Dallas and Wiley H. Thomas, Sr. (1915-2005) of the Fargo Community.
It is very acceptable to send flowers; however, in lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to Faith United Methodist Church, 2420 High School Drive, Vernon, Texas 76384 (940-553-1643), Alzheimer's Research Foundations, or any charity of choice.
May the Lord richly bless, and continue to do so, all the staff members of The Sterling House (aka Merrill Gardens), Vernon Care Center, Dr. Robert Borchhardt, Dr. Randall Schaffner, Pastor Tom Carter, Dr. John wade, current pastor of Faith United Methodist Church, and all the wonderful members of Faith United Methodist Church, especially Aunt Alice Reese.
Thanks to the Tims Funeral Home (currently Lowell-Tims Funeral Home) of Altus, Oklahoma, for meeting our need in the time of crisis just as they have for other members of the Folley family over the past 50 years.
Mrs. Mason will Lie in State Sunday and Monday at Lowell-Tims Funeral Home in Altus. She will Lie in State on Tuesday, August 19, at the Faith United Methodist Church in Vernon from 10:00 a.m. until 12:30 p.m.
Funeral services for Meadie Folley Mason will be held at 1:00 p.m., Tuesday, August 19, 2008, at the Faith United Methodist Church in Vernon, Texas, with Dr. John Wade officiating. Interment will follow at Eastview Cemetery in Vernon under the direction of Lowell-Tims Funeral Home in Altus.
Online tributes can be made to the family at www.lowell-tims.com
Faith United Methodist Church
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