Viola Webb, retired staff member of the Kansas-Nebraska Convention of Southern Baptists died Wednesday, Feb. 18, at age 95. She was executive director of Kansas-Nebraska Woman's Missionary Union for 25 years. After she retired in 1982, Kansas-Nebraska Southern Baptists named their annual missions offering for her. Mrs. Webb was born July 3, 1913, in Thrifty, Texas, to Aster Clay Middleton and Mary Belle Ellis. She married her childhood friend, Collins Webb, July 27, 1930, in Texas. Her husband was a Southern Baptist pastor, and she served at his side. They served small churches in Texas, New Mexico and Kansas. Collins Webb died in 1962 in Wichita, Kan. As a child, Viola believed God wanted her to be a missionary nurse in Africa. Although that calling never materialized, she found other ways to serve, including a ministry to international students. Mrs. Webb also was very active in her church, First Southern Baptist Church in Topeka, until her health declined in the mid-1990s. She is survived by two sisters, Virgie Jewel, Coleman, Texas, and Edna Smith, Santa Maria, Calif.; her son, Don Webb, and his wife, Patricia; a grandson, Scott Webb, and his wife, Dalaine, and their children, Ryan, Taylor and Bethany; a granddaughter, Andrea Watson and her daughter, Ashley. The Webb family members all live in the St. Louis area. Preceding her in death were her parents and her husband; her sisters, Leta Mae and Olita; her brothers, A.C. Middleton, Eddie Middleton and Cecil Middleton; and her grandson-in-law, Scott Watson. The funeral will be held 1 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21, at First Southern Baptist Church, 1912 SW Gage, Topeka, KS. Mrs. Webb will lie in state after 3 p.m., Friday at the Penwell-Gabel Mid-Town Chapel, 1320 SW 10th Ave, Topeka, where the family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. Burial will be at Coleman City Cemetery, Coleman, TX. Memorials may be sent to the Viola Webb Missions Offering or Webster Conference Center in care of Kansas-Nebraska Convention of Southern Baptists, 5410 SW 7th St., Topeka, KS 66606. To leave a message for the family online, please visit www.PenwellGabel.com. Viola Webb
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Published in Topeka Capital-Journal on Feb. 20, 2009