MISSION – Maxine Elizabeth Durst Ellis, 98, passed away on Friday, Aug. 14, 2015, at Amara Hospice.
Mrs. Ellis was born Dec. 18, 1916, to pioneer parents in Optima, Okla. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in home economics from Panhandle A&M College in Goodwill, Okla. in 1936 and married Cecil Ellis that year. They moved to Texas for his studies at SMU’s Perkins School of Theology, and settled into their first parsonage in rural Aubrey. She taught school there and, by night, they were the custodians at a bank to pay for his tuition.
As an active preacher’s wife, she sang in the choir, taught Sunday School, led MYF activities and W.S.C.S. projects. Periodically, she taught at local schools – special education, 4th grade, or home economics. After retiring from active ministry in 1973, the couple resided at their lakeside cabin near Moose Lake, Minn. For a time, she taught adult special education at the Moose Lake State Hospital.
They were winter visitors to Mission for 23 years and were active at the First Methodist Churches in Mission and McAllen.
Survivors include her daughters, Dianne Ellis of Mission, Marlis Cuthbertson of Brownsboro and Stephanie Ellis of Boston; and one granddaughter, two great-grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband and a grandson, John Wagner.
Her ashes will be interred beside her husband in Arlington. A celebration service will be held during the 2016 Winter Texan season.
Memorial donations may be sent to “ESL Classes,” First United Methodist Church, 1101 Doherty Ave., Mission, TX 78572.