COLUMBIA — Life threw Lucy Ellawee Scheerer many curve balls, but she remained resilient, always striving to help others even when she had very little.
Mrs. Scheerer of Columbia died Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2012. She was 97.
She was born Nov. 21, 1914, in Centralia, Okla., to Viola Wiggins and John Bailey Harrison.
She moved to Carthage in 1921 and met her husband, Cecil Carl Hall, whom she married Dec. 2, 1933.
Hall died from a ruptured appendix in 1947, leaving Mrs. Scheerer to raise four children under the age of 12 on her own.
"It was tough on her when daddy left," said her son John Hall, who was 7 when his father died. "Many people would have curled up in a ball and given up, but she was a very strong lady."
Always a self-sufficient woman, Mrs. Scheerer got a job at a greenhouse in the summer of 1947 and worked odd hours to make ends meet.
"She would go to work around 4 o’clock in the morning and get off when the temperature hit 120 degrees in the greenhouse," Hall said. "After, she would come home to do housework, and at night she would garden by streetlight. She made $20 a week, fed and clothed all of her kids and paid off the mortgage on the house."
In 1948 she began work at Big Smith Inc. in Carthage as an embroidery specialist. Through that job, she met Joseph Douglas Scheerer, whom she married on Nov. 2, 1952.
She was a member of the Carthage Church of the Nazarene.
Mrs. Scheerer was known for her cooking and crocheting and never hesitated to share her skills with others.
"She taught me how to cook some of her favorite recipes, like how to make homemade chicken noodle soup and chicken and dumplings," her granddaughter Cynthia Pescaglia said. "And she loved to crochet. When I was 17 I went to spend a week with her so I could learn that trait."
After giving her son a sloppy haircut in seventh grade, a local barber received a few choice words from Mrs. Scheerer, who was known for her sharp tongue. A few years later, the barber moved across the street from her, and when his wife died, Mrs. Scheerer put their differences behind her and "adopted" him.
"From then on, any meal she ever cooked she would never put on the table unless he got food first," Hall said. "So that is the type of person my mother has always been: getting mad at someone and then making sure he had every meal he needed after his wife died."
Mrs. Scheerer is survived by two sons; John Hall and his wife, Noel, of Columbia and William Scheerer and his wife, Barbara, of Carthage, four daughters; Janice Pinter and Delores Kennell, both of Carthage, Ola Marie Thomas and her husband, David, of Springfield, and Carla Jo Saxon and her husband, Mario Rodriguez, of San Antonio, Texas; seven grandchildren; 15 great grandchildren; three great-great-grandchildren; two step-grandchildren; and one step-great-grandchild.
Her first husband, Cecil Carl Hall; her second husband, Joseph Douglas Scheerer; a daughter, Jacqueline Lynn Fulton; four sisters, Virgie Bryant, Bertha Thompson, Marie Wiggington, Oneta Gray; four brothers; Buster, Wallace, Willard and Raymond Harrison; two infant great-grandchildren; and stepsons, Bill and Jack Scheerer, died earlier.
Services for the family will be held Thursday in Carthage.
Supervising editor is Zach Murdock.