Ola Riddle of Stamford, Texas, passed into the loving arms of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ on Saturday, April 21. She was 89 years old. After several years of living with Alzheimer’s, she is now with her parents, brothers and sisters in the perfection of God’s glory.
Ola Henson was born on April 9, 1923 in Dorchester, Texas in Grayson County. She was the eighth of ten children born to Maggie Maudine Hall Henson and Andrew Jefferson Henson. Her twin sister, Zola, died at birth. She attended school at Range Creek through the sixth grade. Her family moved to West Texas when she was about twelve years old. She went to school at Sunnyside, Stamford Junior High School and graduated from Stamford High School in 1941.
Ola married Adlie Ray “Pat” Stinson in Dallas, Texas on January 27, 1944. To this marriage was born a son, Johnnie Ray Stinson. Pat was in the U.S. Army and they were stationed in Miami, Florida and San Angelo, Texas. Pat died in an accident on July 21, 1948.
Ola returned to Stamford and worked for Bell Telephone Company as a telephone operator for ten years. She was promoted to the position of a repair clerk in the plant department. While working for Bell Telephone, a co-worker planned a blind date for Ola. This blind date became her husband of 59 years! On January 10, 1953, Ola and J.C. Riddle were married in Stamford. Ola spent her married life caring for her children and grandchildren. She was an active member of First Baptist Church in Stamford while her health was good. Throughout her life she was the 10 year old girls Sunday school teacher, a G.A. leader and served as the WMU director. Even after her children left home, she and J.C. traveled on mission trips with the high school choir. She sang in the FBC adult choir, played in the adult hand bell choir and worked in the Sunday school office. Ola was a member of the Stamford Music Club.
Throughout their marriage J.C. and Ola enjoyed traveling. If J.C. asked her if she wanted to go somewhere, Ola had their suitcases packed! A favorite vacation spot was Branson, Missouri. Their travels included Alaska, Hawaii, Europe, and the Caribbean Islands.
Ola was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Pat, and her siblings: David Grant Henson, Ophelia Reed, Lonnie Lois Henson, Tula Mae Henson, James Cleo Henson, Oree Ashley, Raymond Henson, Zola Henson and Toy Jay Henson. Ola is survived by her husband, J.C., and her three children: son, Johnnie Riddle and wife, Sandra, of Hamlin; daughter, Debbie Letz and husband, Dave, of Abilene, and son, Ronnie Riddle and wife, Patty, of Abilene. Her eight grandchildren are Dee Kropik and husband, Troy, of Garland, Shae Creel and wife, Christie, of Rowlett, Chris Riddle and wife, Reana, of Fort Worth, April Speed and husband, Corey, of Aledo, Amber Ramirez and husband, George, of Magnolia, Alan Letz and wife, Jennifer, of Cypress, Sterling Riddle and Hadley Riddle, of Abilene. Great-grandchildren are Brandi Webb, Laryn Kropik, Clarke Creel, Jhett Creel, Annsley Creel, Aydriel Riddle, Ayrik Riddle, Kailyn Speed, Addison Speed, Jacob Ramirez and Elizabeth Letz. Great-great grandchild is Tyler Newcomb. Sister-in-laws include Polly Henson of Pilot Point and Mary Jo Henson of Paradise.
The family will receive visitors from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, April 27 at Tankersley Funeral Home in Stamford, Texas. The celebration service of Ola’s life will be held at 2:00 p.m., Saturday, April 28, at First Baptist Church in Stamford with Larry Jones, longtime family friend and Director of Missions Lubbock Baptist Association, and Jacob West, pastor of FBC Stamford, officiating. Burial will follow at Highland Memorial Cemetery in Stamford. Pallbearers will be Ola’s grandsons and a nephew.
The family sincerely thanks her caregivers, Vivieene Ball and Irene Rodriguez, for their daily loving care of our wife and mother. Thank you, Jan McKeever and Stacie McKeever, for staying with her at night so Dad could rest. We also want to acknowledge Hospice of the Big Country for their outstanding care for Miss Ola. As her children, we are thankful for the way our Dad has graciously, tenderly and lovingly been by Mother’s side attending to her every need for many months.
Memorials in her honor may be sent to Hospice of the Big Country, 4601 Hartford St., Abilene, TX. 79605 or to First Baptist Church, P.O. Box 24, Stamford, TX 79553.