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Mattie Imelda (McLendon) Dellinger

Mattie Imelda (McLendon) Dellinger, 101, lifelong resident of Center, Texas, passed away Tuesday, May 28, 2013, at her residence. Services will be 10 a.m. Saturday, June 1, 2013, at First Baptist Church of Center with Bro. Michael Hale and Bro. Carl Smith officiating. Burial will follow at Oaklawn Memorial Park. Two visitation times will be Friday, May 31, 2013, from 10 a.m. until noon, and again from 5 until 8 p.m. at Mangum Funeral Home. Ms. Mattie was born Oct. 1, 1911, in Center to M.B. "Bartow" McLendon (born in Troy, Ala., from 1868-1933) and Carrie Elizabeth (Smithson) McLendon (born March 22, 1885, in Grand Rivers, Ky., to 1985). Mattie joined and was baptized into the First Baptist Church, Center, at the age of 12. Mattie was a 1929 graduate of Center High School. She worked as a clerk after graduation at Perry Brothers for six months and Bridges Drug Store for two years. Mattie married L.L. "Pete" Dellinger, husband of nearly 33 years, until his death in 1966. L.L. was born in Ben Lomand, Ark., and was a pharmacist and grocer. She worked for the two Center newspapers for over 50 years and the radio stations for over 17 years. Some of Mattie's credits include: worthy matron Order of Eastern Star in Center from 1940-41; secretary in county school superintendent's office; charter member of CHS Band Booster; PTA officer; WMU officer; active Sunday school member, and charter member of Shelby County Historical Society. She operated her own news bureau for newspapers (state), was a member of Texas and National Press Women, was the first woman appointed to the Board of the 4-H Foundation at A&M College, was named Texas Press woman of the year in 1983 for District 9, was honored by B&PW Club in Center by being named their outstanding woman of year, and in 1985, the Center Alumni Association elected Mattie to their Hall of Fame as an outstanding alumni. Mattie began her popular radio talk show, Mattie's Party Line, in 1987. Social life and fun was the '29 club of Flappers and Jelly Beans that lasted for 10 years. Mattie enjoyed all the trips made by 1st National Bank (Citizens Bank) Travel Club, and in later life, Mattie enjoyed the Monday noon lunches with her friends, Mildred Pinkston, Bobbie Covington, Syble Holt and Kathleen Parker. She is preceded in death by her Parents, M.B. and Carrie McLendon; husband, L.L. "Pete" Dellinger; son, Dan Dellinger; daughter-in-law, Ruby Dellinger; sister, Lucy Lee (McLendon) Gregory; and brothers, George Martin McLendon and Maurice Bartow McLendon. She is survived by daughter, Dixie Lee Dellinger of Center; two granddaughters, Denise Dellinger Oates and husband, Shepherd, of Mesquite, and Deborah Dellinger Young and husband, Jeff, of Center; two great-grandsons, Stephen Daniel Oates and wife, Leslie, of Mesquite and David Young of Nacogdoches; a great-great-granddaughter, Ryiot Oates; two nieces, Lou Nell McLendon Jones of Houston, and Cindy McLendon McCracken of Baton Rouge; a nephew, Stan McLendon of Humble; a great-nephew, Shane McClendon of Houston; cousins, Jack Barron of Center and Billy McClendon of Houston; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Pallbearers include John R. Smith, Buster Bounds, Jerry Pinkston, Rob Payne, Chris Watlington and Ronnie Daniels. Honorary pallbearers include David Jacobs, Larry Ballard, Randy McLeroy, Billy Poindexter, Joe Louis Jones, Tom Steele, Willie Nelson, A.J. Procell, Don Pinkston and James Paul Wilson. You may sign the online registry book at www.mangumfuneralhome.com. Services are under the direction of Mangum Funeral Home, Center.

Published in The Daily Sentinel on May 30, 2013
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