Thelma Hemphill Evans, resident of Brandon Woods at Alvamar, passed away on October 19, 2011. Family will greet friends from 5:30 – 7:00 pm, Friday, November 4th, at the Warren-McElwain Mortuary, 13th and Massachusetts Street. Memorial service will be held at the First Presbyterian Church, 2415 Clinton Pkwy, on Saturday, November 5th, at 11:00 am. Private inurnment for immediate family will be at Oak Hill Cemetery.
Thelma McCleary Hemphill was born on July 24, 1910, in Reno, Kansas. She had wonderful memories of her childhood spent at the Hemphill homestead. They moved to Lawrence when she entered first grade. She attended Lawrence schools and continued her education at Kansas State Teachers College in Emporia, where she was a member of Delta Sigma Epsilon Sorority. Her first teaching position was in Lecompton, followed by several years at Pinckney Grade School. Over the years she received many notes from former students telling how significant she was in their education. She married David Houston Evans upon his return from Harvard Business School. In early marriage they loved to go to the Pla-Mor Ballroom in Kansas City, and Meadow Acres in Topeka, where they danced to Big Band music. David preceded her in death in 1984, shortly after their 50th wedding anniversary.
The Evans family had businesses in various types of transportation dating back to 1863, when the family started the Lawrence Transfer Company. In later years the auto supply stores expanded to Topeka, Manhattan and Kansas City. The Hemphill family business, also dating back to early days in Lawrence history, was in farmland sales and investments.
Thelma was the oldest living member of the First Presbyterian Church. She was a past president of Chapter AZ of the P.E.O. Sisterhood. She belonged to the Betty Washington Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, the RLH Club (Reno-Lawrence Helpers), the Lakeview Club, and the Lawrence Country Club. For several decades she participated in a retired teachers bridge group. She loved gatherings with family and relatives. She amazed everyone with a sharp mind past 100 years of age, with her fun humor and practical approach to life. All of her brothers and sister preceded her in death. She was the last surviving child of Barbara McCleary and Charles Woodward Hemphill.
The family celebrates the wonderful, long life Thelma was fortunate to live. Thanks to the employees of Brandon Woods for their excellent care and kindness during her 7 years of residency. Special thanks to Dr. Donald Hatton for over 30 years of care for both Thelma and David. She leaves her two daughters and families: Mary Ann Langworthy of Santa Barbara, California; Doris and husband, Dr. R. Dean Williams, of Mission Hills, Kansas; five grandchildren: David Evans Langworthy and wife, Maria, of Seattle; George Hodges Langworthy of Los Angeles; Elaine Jacobs and husband, Jeff, of Mission Hills; Nancy Weeks and husband, Cooper, Jr. of Prairie Village; and Sarah Jozwiakowski and husband, Randy, of St. Louis. She was extremely proud of her 9 great grandchildren: Georgia and Adelaide Langworthy; Jackson and Connor Jacobs; John Cooper and Lyla Weeks; and Abby, Molly & Kate Jozwiakowski.
Memorial donations may be made to the First Presbyterian Church, The P.E.O. Chapter AZ Education Fund, or charity of your choice. They may be sent in care of the mortuary.