Lawrence and Thelma Grubbs Fitzgerald
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Thelma and Lawrence Fitzgerald
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Thelma Paralee Grubbs was born in Red Mud Community, Kent County to George Washington Grubbs and Audrey Fuqua Grubbs on May 27, 1914

William Lawrence Fitzgerald was born in Frederick, Oklahoma, to Willie Edward and Lonnie Lee Willis Fitzgerald on March 25, 1909. His family moved to East Texas when Lawrence was very young, so he was a Texan nearly all of his life.

How were these two people eventually to get together in Dickens County?

Thelma attended school at Red Mud, Kent County, with her sisters and brothers, Elsie, Jane, Carroll and Earl. (Iva Jane Grubbs graduated from Spur High School in 1935.) Her Paternal grandparents were William Lancaster and Permelia Jane Fant Grubbs. Maternal grandparents were Newton Bonapart Fuqua and Paralee Barnett Fuqua.

When Thelma was seven she was bitten by a rattlesnake. As her parents were calling for a doctor, Chalk Brown heard on the party line and came in his new Buick (the only car in the community) and carried her to Nichols Hospital in Spur.

Lawrence attended school in Rains, Hopkins, and Van Zandt counties. His paternal grandparents were Sam Fitzgerald and Elizabeth Wilson Fitzgerald. Lawrence´s maternal grandparents died when his mother and her two brothers and sister were children.

Lawrence broke his arm when he was ten riding a horse and his ankle when he was 13-riding a calf (obviously not a rodeo star).

Thelma and Lawrence met at a Sunday night singing at the Red Mud Church in the spring of 1930. Thelma and some of the other young ladies thought he had the funniest last name they had ever heard! Lawrence had come to West Texas because his sisters, Estel Johnson, Viola Darlin were living here. Sister Lola Bell Grisham made it to West Texas a few years later.

Lawrence and Thelma were married by Reverend F. G. Rogers on March 4, 1933, at the Baptist parsonage in Spur. They farmed in Kent County until 1942 when they moved to farm in Dickens County. By the time they moved to Dickens County they already had four farmhands Eloise, Winston, Benny, And Armon. Two more came along--Jane and Shirley--before they moved into Spur in 1948. Lawrence began a trucking and harvesting business when they moved to Spur. Kay and June were born to complete the family.

Lawrence and Thelma invested their lives in their children Money could never provide what they, through their simple commitment to the principles of honesty and unselfishness, gave their 8 children, 17 grandchildren, and 20 great-grandchildren. Nothing would please them more than to see what they have begotten: Eloise and Gene Smith-Cynthia and David Hardin (Josh and Drew), Rickey Smith (Shea), Stephen Smith (Tanna); Winston and Charlena Fitzgerald -Michele and Keith Smith, Kristi and Chris Cornett (Ashtyn and Gage); Benny and Cathy Fitzgerald-Elizabeth, David, Audrey and Dusty Hill (Abby and Jolee); Armon (Flip) and Norma Fitzgerald -Lisa Hancock (Adam and Valaree); Jane Matlock-Dale and Vickie Matlock (Courtney, Troy and Kayla), June and Jimmy Hood; Shirley and Johnny Scott-Chris, Rebecca and Doug Holley (Zach and Nick); Kay and Don Hagins- Jay, and Scarlett; June and Joe Mike Scott-Patricia and Kelsey Hammit (Logan and Kaitlyn), Patsy and Joe Montoya (Izaak, Monika, and Jamee).

Written by Jane Matlock
submitted by June Scott

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Services for Lawrence Fitzgerald, 82, were at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, November 26, 1991, in the First Baptist Church. Church pastor, Rev. Genoa Goad, officiated.

Burial was in Red Mud Cemetery under direction of Campbell Funeral Home.

Mr. Fitzgerald died about 8:47 a.m. on November 24, 1991, in the Crosbyton Clinic Hospital. Death was due to natural causes.

He was born in Frederick, Oklahoma and moved to Kent County. He later moved to Dickens County in 1942. He was involved in farming and trucking before his retirement. He married Thelma Grubbs in Spur on March 4, 1933.

Survivors include his wife; three sons, Winston Fitzgerald and Armond (Flip) Fitzgerald, both of Spur; five daughters, Elise Smith, Daingerfield; Jane Matlock, Ira; Shirley Scot, Lubbock; Kay Hagins, White River Lake and June Scott, Dumas; two sisters, Estel Shade, Lubbock and Lola Bell Grisham, Spur; 15 grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.

Grandsons served as pallbearers.

©The Texas Spur, November 28, 1991

SPUR (Special) Services for Thelma Paralee Fitzgerald, 85, of Spur will be at 2 p.m. today at First Baptist Church with the Rev. Richard Harbison and the Rev. John Tunnell officiating.

Burial will be in Red Mud Cemetery under the direction of Campbell Funeral Home.

She died Monday, Jan. 17, 2000, in Breckenridge, Texas.

She was born May 27, 1914, in the Red Mud community. She married William Lawrence Fitzgerald on March 4, 1933, in Spur. He died Nov. 24, 1991. She lived in Kent and Dickens counties all of her life.

She was a homemaker and a member of First Baptist Church. She was preceded in death by two grandchildren.

Survivors include three sons, Winston of White River Lake, Benny of Quitaque and Armon of Spur; five daughters, Eloise Smith of Dangerfield, Jane Matlock of Albany, Texas, Shirley Scott of Lubbock, Kay Hagins of White River Lake and June Scott of Dumas; 15 grandchildren; 18 great-grandchildren.

©Lubbock Avalanche Journal, Wednesday, January 19, 2000

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