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Thelma Ray Sills Trull, aged 85, died in San Antonio, Texas, Wednesday, November 14, 2012, surrounded by family and friends. Thelma is survived by her husband of 61 years, Donald E. Trull; her daughter, Susan C. Trull of San Antonio; her grandson Matthew Trull of Bakersfield, California; and her nephews Josh Sills of Dry Creek Ranch, David Trull (Texas), Paul Trull (Kansas), and Pete Trull (Kansas). Her son, D. Scott Trull, and her brother, Herbert Joshua Sills, Jr., preceded her in death. Thelma was born in Rayne, Louisiana to the late Herbert J. Sills, Sr. and Roxie Sills of Rayne. She graduated from Rayne High School and completed her Liberal Arts degree (Southwestern Louisiana Institute, now University of Southwestern Louisiana) in 1948 and her Master's Degree in Library Science (Louisiana State University) in 1950. True to Thelma's sense of adventure, her first job as a children's librarian was in Albuquerque, where she met and married Don in 1951. Their adventure continued as they moved across the United States for Don to progress in his career with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), living in nearly a dozen different states, finally retiring in San Antonio, Texas, in 1982 to be near their daughter. Pursuing her desire to provide support and a social bridge for wives who had just moved to a new town, Thelma organized the first FHWA wives' association. She remained true to her Louisiana roots regardless of where she and Don lived, cooking gumbo and teaching her northern friends about filé. She enjoyed various crafts, including counted cross-stitch, sewing, and making silk floral arrangements. She was a long-time member of the Order of the Eastern Star. "Big Red," as she lovingly became known by Don and friends, was well-known for her generosity to many U.S. Indian tribes as well as orphans in Kenya, East Africa. Thelma was the most loving wife, mother, and grandmother. We will miss her and keep her forever in our hearts.
The family will receive friends at Gossen Funeral Home in Rayne on Monday, November 19, from 4 to 8 p.m. and from noon to 2 p.m. Tuesday, November 20. Funeral services will be held at the funeral home on Tuesday at 2 p.m. followed by grave side services at the Rayne Cemetery.
Published in Express-News on Nov. 21, 2012