Welda Sims Thurman, of Groesbeck/Lake Limestone, passed away at Limestone Medical Center in Groesbeck, on Thursday, March 10, 2022, at age 91.
Visitation will begin at 1:00 P.M. on Sunday, March 20, 2022, at Groesbeck Funeral Home.
Funeral services will begin at 2:00 P.M. on Sunday in the Groesbeck Funeral Home Chapel, with Pastors Tracy Sims and Jon Honea officiating. Burial will follow in Lost Prairie Cemetery.
Pallbearers will be Luke Ramsey, Blaine Douglas, Jeff Sims, Greg Scherbenske, Chance Germany, Jerry Germany, Al Stephens, and Bobby Jones.
Honorary pallbearers will be Ronnie Sassin, Jaryn Sims, J.D. Stephens, Mike Jones, Adam Collett, Gary Sims, Dennis Smith, Bob Maus, Donnie Stephens, Robert Collett and Stanley Hawkins.
Welda was born September 25, 1930, in Fort Worth to John Weldon McCandless and Mary Mariah (Harris) McCandless. She grew up in Farmersville and later in West Columbia.
Welda married her high school sweetheart, J.W. Sims, on January 12, 1946, in Harris County, and they lived in West Columbia, where they raised their two sons. She went to work for the U. S. Post Office in Old Ocean in 1956 and moved to Old Ocean in 1968 when she became the Postmaster. She retired after 35 years in 1991.
Welda was a member of First Baptist Church in Old Ocean and the First Baptist Church in West Columbia. She and J.W. both taught Sunday School and she was very involved with the youth group. She and J.W. performed a pantomime act where she was “Minnie Pearl” for entertainment at youth functions, and she always decorated for all the church events, especially when it was for the young people.
Welda and J.W., who was born at Personville, had planned to retire in Limestone County. They bought property at Lake Limestone and built a home while working, and her sister-in-law and brother-in-law, James and Gloria Oswalt lived next door. After J.W. passed away in 1990, and when she retired the next year, Welda moved to the lake. She loved having her grandchildren and great grandchildren with their families spend time there.
Welda believed in being on time and being organized. The Frank Sinatra song, “I Did It MY Way” could describe her. She loved organizing for the 4th. of July for the neighborhood at the lake, bought the fireworks, and planned the food, with around one hundred people coming to watch the fireworks. As soon the 4th. of July was over, she was already organizing for the family’s Thanksgiving and Christmas. Planning meals was her hobby.
Welda was introduced to Robert Thurman by Jack and Judy Telford at the sale barn cafe. Judy’s matchmaking worked, and Welda and Robert were married on March 10, 1993, at the First Baptist Church of Groesbeck. He moved to her home at the lake, and together they worked at his peach orchard at Box Church, until they retired from peaches around 2005. Robert was known as the Cat-fish King at the lake, and while he was out fishing, Welda rode on the pontoon boat with him, though she was reading a book. He caught the fish and she cooked them. They had 25 happy years until he passed away in 2018. She had her dear sister-in-law, Gloria next door and good friends and neighbors at Big Creek West.
Welda was preceded in death by her parents; her first husband, J.W. Sims and second husband, Robert Thurman; and her brother-in-law, James E. Oswalt.
She is survived by her two sons and daughters-in-law, Jim and Sherry Sims of Houston, Dennis and Jan Sims of Friendswood and step-son Adam Collett and wife Sue of Groesbeck; 4 grandchildren and their spouses: Jeffery and Ginger Sims of Cypress, Jennifer and Greg Scherbenske of Cypress, Heather and Lucas Ramsey of Friendswood, and Trisha and Blaine Douglas of Houston. There are 9 great grandchildren: Jaryn Sims of Cypress, Kaitlyn Ramsey of Huntsville, Jillian Sims of Cypress, Emma Ramsey of Friendswood, Payton Scherbenske of Cypress, Stratton Douglas of Houston, Paisley Scherbenske of Cypress, Kerrington Douglas of Houston, and Dagny Douglas of Houston; and her sister and brother-in-law, Barbara and J.D. Stephens of Alvin and sister-in-law, Gloria Oswalt of Lake Limestone.
Welda can be honored by anyone wishing to make donations in her memory to the group which she continued to support after moving to the lake: Columbia Christian Senior Citizens Center (629 East Bernard, West Columbia, TX 77486 – phone 979-345-5955.)