Wanda LaVelle May

      • Full Obituary

        Wanda LaVelle May, nee Nunley, resident of Trenton, Illinois, formally a long-time resident of Brownwood, Texas, passed away on March 3, 2024, at Trenton Village, Trenton, Illinois, at the age of 101 years.


        Wanda, the youngest of her family, was born to Alpine P. Nunley and Sarah Almira "Allie" Nunley, nee Hall, on February 16, 1923, in Benjamin, Texas.


        Wanda married Ernest R. " Ernie" May on April 20, 1950, in Lovington, New Mexico.
        Children of the family include Ernestine Messick, nee May, Jerry May, Tony Docken, nee May, Michael May, and Philip May.


        Wanda grew up in Benjamin, Texas. Her mother sewed for people so Wanda could take piano lessons, and Wanda would get her practice in on the church and school pianos. She loved writing stories and acting them out with her niece, Nadine Griffin, nee Parker, who was more like her sister. Wanda loved school and learning, graduating Valedictorian of her Benjamin High School class. After high school, she went to Draughon's Business College in Wichita Falls, Texas. From there, she went to California and worked for Western Union at Camp Roberts, California.


        Whatever Wanda put her hands to, she did it with her whole heart. She was a loving wife and mother, who devoted her time to making a home where her family was loved and welcoming to others into the family fellowship.


        Wanda loved her local church wherever she lived including: Benjamin, Texas; Lubbock, Texas; Hood River, Oregon; Brownwood, Texas; and Trenton, Illinois. She accepted Christ as her Savior at the age of 13 and served the Lord in many different ways: playing the piano, teaching Sunday School, singing in the choir, and being the church secretary at Rocky Creek Baptist Church of Brownwood, Texas, until she was 85.


        She was a career secretary before her final secretarial service at Rocky Creek. She held secretarial positions at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, the County Extension Office in Hood River, Oregon, and the 4 H Center in Brownwood, Texas.


        Wanda somehow found time to sew and make crafts from which many of her family members benefited. She loved singing hymns around her piano with her husband, Ernie, children, and friends. She was a master at the Texas 42 dominoes game. Most of her family wanted her as a partner. She also loved traveling with her husband, Ernie, in their camper from coast to coast. Another thing she loved doing with Ernie was managing a 4-H Camp one summer in Salem, Oregon. Picking giant blackberries in that location and making jams and pies was a real hit for everyone!


        Wanda dearly loved her grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and great-nieces and nephews. However, they had to share her affection with her passionate love for the state of Texas and the Dallas Cowboys. She was a true Texan. Her father gave her a gun at the age of 13, then her brother Floyd took her hunting and taught her how to shoot rabbits. She was known for her Texas staples: Texas red beans, cornbread, and pecan pie.


        Family members who proceeded Wanda in death are:
        Husband, Ernest R. "Ernie" May;
        Parents, Alpine, and Allie Nunley, nee Hall;
        Siblings, Ethel Parker, nee Nunley, JT. Nunley, Tom Nunley; Obie Nunley, Dorothy Callaway, nee Nunley,
        and Floyd Nunley;
        Children of the family, Jerry May, Toni Docken, nee May;
        Son-in-law, Paul Docken;
        Grandchild, Valerie Williams, nee Messick.


        Children of the family who survive Wanda are:
        Ernestine (John) Messick;
        Michael (Natalie) May;
        Philip (Gayla) May;
        Grandchildren of the family:
        Kim Morrison, nee Messick;
        Steven (Erin) Messick;
        Ryan Messick;
        Jason (Ashley) May;
        Kelly (Christa) May;
        Cheyenne May;
        Jerry May, Jr.;
        Michael J.(Melissa) May;
        Sarah (Stephen) Campbell, nee May;
        Andrew May and close friend Wendy West;
        Jenna (Travis) Cox, nee May;
        Philip T. May;
        Kara (Theron) Fisk, nee May,
        Very close friends, like grandkids, David (Beverly) Eckell, Cameron (Sydney) Eckell, and Benjamin Eckell


        Wanda also shared her love and smiles with her surviving great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews, as well as great-nieces and nephews.


        The family would like to extend a special appreciation to West Gate Baptist Church, Trenton, Illinois; Trenton Village administration and staff; the city of Trenton, even though she was an 8-year transplant from Texas she felt at home in Trenton; HSHS hospice for last-days care; Philip Moss, Moss Funeral Home, Breese, Illinois, and Davis Morris Funeral Home, Brownwood, Texas.


        Visitation will be Friday, March 15 from 5pm to 7pm at Heritage Funeral Home Davis-Morris Chapel, Brownwood, Texas, and March 16 from 10am to 11am at Rocky Creek Baptist Church, Brownwood, Texas. The funeral service will follow at 11am with Pastor Blu Tidwell, Dr. Michael May, and Reverend Rick Justice officiating. Burial will follow at Rocky Creek Baptist Cemetery, Brownwood, Texas.


        Also, there will be a celebration of life for Wanda at West Gate Baptist Church, Trenton, Illinois, on April 13, starting at 10 AM.


        Memorials can be made to a central fund (Church Fund) for Wanda's beloved local churches to honor Jesus Christ and the work of His Gospel, the Good News.


        Condolences to: Heritage Funeral Home Davis-Morris Chapel: www.heritagefuneraltx.com;

        or Moss Funeral Home for Trenton, Illinois.

      Our Services