The Brady Herald
26 August 1975
You have seen her driving around Brady in her little '54 green Chevy taking
her friends (who no longer drive cars) to visit sick friends in the hospital
or nursing homes or taking a pie to a family who has had a death.
Mrs. Waddill will tell you, "Eighty-four isn't really old at all." In fact, she promised her '54 Chevy to her grandson, Bryan, "When I'm 90."
You will believe that she is still young when you see her playing the piano for singspirations at the nursing homes every week and for "the Golden Agers' Club" singspirations on Friday evenings. On Sunday mornings the young children in Sunday School at the First Baptist Church throw kisses to Mrs. Waddill when she comes by their departments to play the piano so they can sing.
Undaunted by having to use a cane now, she arrives at church early so that she can take her time getting up the steps into the Sunday School building. Mrs. Waddill has been a member of the First Baptist Church longer than any other member and has played the piano there for more than 60 years.
For half a century Mrs. Waddill was a familiar face to school children at the Central Ward (where Junior High now stands), North Ward, and South Ward schools where she taught more than 1,000 Brady citizens to read and write as they entered her first grade classes.
She was 17 when she taught her first class in a rural school near Richland Springs. Later she attended and graduated from Howard Payne College in Brownwood.
In 1922 she married Sheriff Otis Waddill. Their first child, Christine, was born in the sheriff's living quarters in the first floor of the old red brick jail before Brady had a hospital.
Two years later, a son, Otis, Jr., joined the family. Otis, Jr. entered the Marines at age 17 in World War II. After the war, he married Martha West while both were students at Hardin-Simmons University. They had two daughters, Debra and Donna.
Following a lengthy illness, Otis, Jr., died in 1967. Debra married Vic Mashburn of Abilene, and their little seven-year-old Kimberly is the pride and joy of her great-grandmother, Mrs. Waddill. Donna graduated from Cooper High School in Abilene in June and plans to attend Texas Tech in September.
Mrs. Waddill occasionally visits her daughter, Christine, in Atlanta, Ga., where she and her husband, James Overton, and their two sons, Bob and Bryan live. Bob is married to the former Kay Murrah of Atlanta.
Mrs. Waddill is glad Christine and James are both following her interest in education. Christine is a high school counselor; James teaches mathematics at Southwest DeKalb High School and at Dekalb College. In 1970 he received the Distinguished Secondary Teacher of America Award from Yale University. This summer he has received an Outstanding Secondary Teacher of America Award.
Mrs. Waddill didn't need "women's lib" to accomplish a great deal in many fields-marriage and family, a long career in education, music, church and community service.
Her friends admire her great spirit; she did not let sorrow in the loss of her husband and son confine her indoors or a crooked keg curtail her activities. Instead, she has actively sought to bring cheer and joy to others and at 84 years is still young-in-heart and happy. Her many, many friends in Brady from two to 82 love her-because she loves them all.
(Compiler's Note from Wayne Spiller, McCulloch County History Book, Vol. I: Mrs. Waddill was born Floyce King).
Submitted by: Louann