1931-2015 Billie Ann Heider Welch, better known as Anne Welch, passed away quietly on March 24, 2015 in the Senior Care Center in Stephenville, Texas. She is survived by younger sisters Mrs. Katherine Hazelwood and husband Terence of Claremore, Oklahoma, and Ms. Sylvia Heider of Tulsa; son Rick Welch and wife Bonnie of Bluffdale, Texas; daughter Sara Bray and husband Bill of Marble Falls, Texas; three of four grandchildren: Richard Christopher Welch, of Choctaw, Oklahoma, Alli Roger and husband Neil of Weatherford, Texas, and Miss Noelle Bray of Marble Falls; two great grandchildren: Trace and Tobin Roger. Billie Ann was born January 11, 1931 to Blanche Bernice Baughman and William Anthony Heider in Kansas City, Missouri, where she spent most of her childhood. She graduated from Will Rogers High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where she met and soon after married Richard C. Dick Welch. While Dick finished his education at University of Oklahoma, Anne devoted herself to home and family. Together, Anne and Dick built his career in Alabama, Oklahoma, Kansas, Louisiana, and finally in Beaumont, Texas, where they settled in 1963 and where Anne remained until 2001, when she moved to Stephenville to live near her son. In Beaumont while her children were school-age, Anne was instrumental in establishing the library at Caldwell Elementary School and later worked as assistant to the administrator of Baptist Hospital. Soon after the children left home, she built a successful career as real estate agent, broker, builder and appraiser. She distinguished herself more than once as outstanding salesperson for duPerier Real Estate and served as president of the Beaumont Board of Realtors. With Tom Bailey and Richard Guseman, she opened the first Coldwell Banker real estate office in the state of Texas, which still exists. Although Anne appreciated Stephenville, she remembered the Gulf Coast fondly and always considered it home. Interment for Anne is planned for May 23 in Pryor, Oklahoma where she will be buried next to her parents. The family requests that any donations be sent to the Senior Care Center, 2601 NW Loop, Stephenville, Texas 76401.
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Published in The Beaumont Enterprise on May 17, 2015