Elmar Tilley

Obituary of Elmar A Tilley

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Elmar Arnwine Kirkendoll Tilley was born May 28, 1926, in Jacksonville, Texas. She was the fifth of eight children, seven girls and one boy, born to Emmitt and Laura Arnwine.

At a very early age, she united with Mt. Haven C.M.E. Church. When she moved to Dallas, she joined Cedar Crest C.M.E. Cathedral. Later, she became a founding member of the First Christian Methodist Evangelistic Church. She was the Chairperson of the Membership Committee. She also served as a member of the Stewardess Board, Finance Committee, the Missionary Society, Gene E. Burt Sunday School, and the Tuesday Morning Bible Class.

Elmar graduated from Fred Douglass High School in Jacksonville, Texas. She attended Tillotson College of Austin, Texas, where she pledged Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated. While studying at Tillotson College, she met and wed Eugene U. Kirkendoll of Chicago, Illinois. After graduating with a B.S. Degree in Home Economics, she began her teaching career in Jacksonville, Texas, in 1949. Teaching at her high school alma mater and coaching basketball, track and field, and the Dragonets Drill Team. In 1961, Elmar wed Chauncey Tilley from her hometown.

Elmar continued her studies and received a Master of Education from Texas Southern University in 1963. She relocated to Dallas in 1964, joined the teaching staff of Dallas Independent School District, and retired from Dallas Independent School District in 1985. Elmar had various teaching experiences in many schools wherein she received excellent and outstanding ratings from all the principals.

Elmar completed and taught a Bible Study Fellowship program. Forever the educator, Elmar co-founded "The Red Bird Learning Center" with Geneva Shaw in 1996. Geneva was the Director and bus driver, and Elmar served as the Bookkeeper and daycare worker. The daycare opened on December 9, 1996, with five children and grew to 54 children by September 1997.

The 97 years God allowed her on this earth attests to how she was a blessing to many. And although Elmar did not have children in the natural sense, she was every bit a mother. She loved like a mother, sacrificed like a mother, served like a mother, nurtured as a mother, and gave – just as a mother gives. Her life is an example that shows us that mothering has less to do with having children and more to do with how you treat the children in your life. Mrs. Tilley will be missed.

Preceding her in death were her Parents, Emmitt and Laura Arnwine; her beloved Husband, Chauncey Tilley; Sisters: Sarah A. Clay, Farilla A. McCowan, Emmittee A. Ragsdale, Ruth A. Whitaker, Freddye A. Cairo, and Brother;Willie Charles Arnwine.

She leaves to cherish her memories: Sister, Effie Arnwine-Clark; Two Nieces, Laurene Ragsdale and Francene (Harvey) Finnen II; six Great Nephews: Klashun B. Ragsdale, G. Xenon Ragsdale, Daniel T. Ragsdale, Harvey Finnen, III, Joseph V. Ragsdale, and Joshua P. Ragsdale. One Great Niece: Franchesska Y. Finnen and a host of other nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.

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Funeral Service (MASK REQUIRED)

11:00 am
Friday, August 25, 2023
First Christian Methodist
7575 South Hampton Road
Dallas, Texas, United States
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Elmar Tilley

In Loving Memory

Elmar Tilley

1926 - 2023

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