Longtime columnist Evie Hall, 99, dies

Published 12:35 am Sunday, November 1, 2009

PENSACOLA, Florida — The last column Evie Hall wrote for The Selma Times-Journal was on Mother’s Day.

She wrote infrequently those last few years of her life, about every quarter.

Her “writing voice” was firm, but gentle. Usually she had some wisdom from her years to impart.

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Hall’s voice is silent, now. She died at the Covenant Hospice Inpatient and Pallative Care Center at West Florida Hospital in Pensacola.

Hall was 99 years old.

She was a retired teacher and a dedicated volunteer columnist for the newspaper.

“The sharpness and wisdom in her personal messages underscored the experiences that she learned from life and the knowledge she gained from lessons of time,” said Judge Joceleste Pettway of Wilcox County.

Hall’s stories covered a range of topics, from the goings-on in and around Safford and its surrounding communities to healthy lifestyles; from her travels to Disneyland and Disney World to other adventures in Arizona, Washington D.C., California and places beyond.

She wrote about church celebrations and family reunions and church anniversaries to milestones in the lives of the people she knew.

“I looked forward to hearing community news, even though she had moved away,” said Dr. Pattie Howard of Sliver Spring, Md.

Anyone who read any of her columns knew of her love for God.

She served for many years and in various capacities in her home church Aimwell Baptist in Safford.

Hall took part in district and state associations. She studied the Bible, as much as she demanded her students study their academic works.

Hall was often a guest speaker for women’s day in various churches.

When she moved to Pensacola to live with relatives to help care for her, she developed the same rapport with the Greater Union Baptist Church.

She wrote articles for the church’s paper, the Observer.

Long after moving from her home in Safford, Hall continued to write for the Times-Journal, keeping up with events in Safford by staying connected with her usual sources.

She once told this reporter she wanted to stay connected to so many people who provided her with “the news.”

One of Hall’s former students, the Rev. Nathaniel Parker said, “Mrs. Hall’s articles always informed.”

Her niece, Hattie Hall, also a retired teacher said Evie Hall had the ability to raise morale and challenge.

Hall retired from teaching and serving as principal in the Dallas County School System in 1975 after 43 years.

She was born in Becks Place — Millers Ferry and attended Millers Ferry Institute, a Presbyterian boarding school.

She completed her undergraduate studies at Alabama State Teachers College, now known as Alabama State University. She was an Atlanta Braves fan and referred to them as “My Braves.” Funeral services were Saturday at the Greater Union Baptist Church in Pensacola.

Interment was at Holy Cross Cemetery, Pensacola.