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Edith Wemple Avery

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Edith Wemple Avery Obituary
AVERY, Edith Wemple 1924 - 2017 Edith Wemple Avery died Oct. 30 at her home in Austin after a long illness. She was 93. The oldest child of a pioneering Midland family, she graduated from Midland High School in 1941. After graduating from Hockaday Junior College in Dallas, she returned to Midland. In 1947, she was elected a national committeewoman from Texas for Young Democrats, mirroring the political involvement of her father, Fred Wemple. Wemple had served on the State Board of Education and was later named chair of the Texas Highway Commission (forerunner of TXDoT). Hank Avery, who had migrated to Midland after graduating Texas A&M, saw Edith while she was working at the family store, Wemple's Music, and arranged a blind date with her - to a church service. Years later, Edith observed of this opening gambit for her hand: "If there were any more snow, we could have skied." The couple wed in 1947. Edith brought a creative verve to everything she did, from sewing costumes for school plays to arranging charity fashion shows to serving as Midland's first lady during her husband's term as mayor from 1962 to 1968. Her genial wit and open heart turned the Avery's home at 2200 Bedford into a gathering place for her children and their friends. She was a life member of PTA. She continued her creative endeavors in oil painting and gourmet cooking. She illustrated a children's book of crossword puzzles. With her keen intelligence, she spoke fluent Spanish and mastered Sudoku puzzles and Mattel Intellivision electronic games. Until macular degeneration dimmed her sight in her 90s, she could do New York Times Crosswords in ink. Edith and her husband moved to Austin to be close to family after fire destroyed their Midland home in 2001. She was preceded in death by her husband; by her parents, Fred and Edith Abels Wemple; by a brother Allen Wemple; and by a sister, Lucille Wemple. Survivors include her daughter Ginger Dixon (and husband Jason) of Round Rock, daughter Andrea Avery (and husband David Shackelford) of Pflugerville, son Cliff Avery (and wife Tara) of Austin; two granddaughters, Alicia Avery of Portland, Ore., and Elyse Dixon of Round Rock; three grandsons, Clay Avery of Pflugerville, Evan Avery of Austin, and Jeffrey Dixon of Round Rock; a sister, Evelyn Allen of Austin; a brother, Ted Wemple of Odessa; and numerous nieces and nephews. A private memorial service will be scheduled at a later time. The family encourages memorials to the American Red Cross (www.redcross.org) or to a . Mom: The coffee pot's off, the lights are out, the dogs are fed, cigarettes are out. You've done everything you were supposed to do.
Published in Austin American-Statesman on Nov. 8, 2017
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