Late in the evening on July 30, 2018, beloved spouse, mother, grandmother, family member and friend, Eula Carmen Mankin Stephens crossed over into the waiting arms of her Savior, Jesus Christ and into her eternal rest. She was reunited there with loving family members and friends who had been waiting to receive her in arms of comfort and love.
Born on January 5, 1919, she was the loving daughter of the late Arch Mankin and Rhelda Richmond Mankin of Bolt, WV. She was born on the farm where she grew up and lived for many years. Eula met her husband of 70 years, Norman (Jake) Stephens, in 1935 “with a group of young people at the community store.” They were married in Pearisburg Virginia by Rev J.A. Early on October 20, 1936. Eula attended Fairview Elementary School, Trap Hill High School, Beckley College, Concord College. She earned a Regents B.A. degree from West Virginia State College and worked as a teacher’s aide at Shumate and Eccles School. “I always liked school. I enjoyed working with children. It gave me time for my children.” Eula retired in 1981 and became a member of the Raleigh County Retired School Employees. Before, during, and after her career she enjoyed being a homemaker.
As a lifelong member of Breckenridge Missionary Baptist Church, Eula’s parents had the greatest influence on her Christian life because “they taught me to attend church and obey God. I have fond memories of Homecomings and cottage prayer meetings of the old church.” Her favorite hymn was “To God be the Glory” and her favorite Bible verse was “Greater love hath no man than this; that a man lay down his life for his friends.” Eula loved her church and worshipping together with friends and family members. She also enjoyed gardening, quilting, working crossword puzzles, traveling with family, attending plays, and listening to the live music of the Greenbrier River Optimistic Ukulele Players (GROUP). Always one to lend a helping hand and never wanting to be a burden on anyone, she will be greatly missed by all who knew her and loved her.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Norman (Jake) Stephens, son, Leon Emerson Stephens, and brother, Noel Mankin. She is survived by her devoted family and those who mourn the passing of this saintly mother, confidant, and friend. Norman and Carol Stephens, Rosemary and Tom Harmon, Anita Stephens, and Robert and Rita Stephens. Grandchildren, Norman Stephens and spouse Kelly, Michael Stephens and spouse Lisa, Susan Harmon Campbell, Jaime Harmon and spouse Bill, Laura Stephens, Shannon Stephens, Samuel Stephens and fiance Madeline, and loving great grandchildren Audrey Stephens and Evelyn Stephens. She will be greatly missed by family members Margaret Jones, Robert (Bob) Morris, Helen Morris, and members of her extended family.
Services in celebration of her wonderful life, well lived, will be held at Breckenridge Missionary Baptist Church in Bolt, WV, on Thursday, August 2, 2018, at 1:00 pm. Friends and family members may call at the church on Wednesday evening, Aug 1 from 6-8 P.M. and one hour before services on Thursday at 1:00 P.M. Her loving pastor of 43 years, Dewey Lowe, will be officiating. Eula’s Faith is now sight.
Pallbearers are: Michael Stephens, Samuel Stephens, Kenny Tolliver, Jeff Tolliver, Charlie Kuhn and Joe McIntyre. Honorary pallbearers: Denver Pettry, Jerry Pegram, Willard Walker and Bob Ducharme.
Memorial contributions may be sent to Breckenridge Baptist Church Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 106, Bolt, WV 25817.
The family wishes to thank the staff of Raleigh General Hospital (especially the nurses in the SICU unit), Hospice of Southern WV, and Calfee Funeral Home, Beckley, WV for their support and services during this difficult time of transition.
Arrangements by Calfee Funeral Home, Beckley.