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Home News-Telegram News Obituaries Derrell Stephens Matthews

Derrell Stephens Matthews

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“We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him.”

Derrell was born July 9, 1927, in Ridgeway, Texas, the oldest son of Will and Addie Matthews. During the depression years, times were difficult for the growing family and work was scarce around Weaver, Texas.

The family lived in a wooden boxcar near the railroad station house where Will worked. But the family was close knit and back then the neighbors were friends and helped one another. Derrell loved to walk, fish and camp out with his father in the nearby creeks.

Derrell took a job with the Western Union Company when he was just 15. He was sent to Gypsum, Kansas to build telegraph lines. He also built lines in Missouri, Colorado and Texas. He stayed with Western Union for 46 1/2 years until his retirement Sept. 29, 1989, holding many jobs with increasing responsibility within the Company headquarters in Dallas after the war.

Derrell joined the Army and served from April 1946 to his honorable discharge as a Corporal in October 1947. He met his future wife, Laquita (Kita) McDonald on a bus ride from Dallas back to visit his family in Weaver. Kita and Derrell were married Jan. 29, 1949, and were blessed with three children, Sarah Beth, Debra Kay and Stephen Glen. After retirement, Derrell and Kita moved back to Hopkins County and lived near Sulphur Springs for the remainder of their lives.

Derrell was most proud of his born again relationship with his Savior Jesus Christ. Derrell faithfully served as a deacon at Elm Ridge Church in Como, Texas. He was also thankful that he lived to see and experience the saving faith of his three children and many of his grandchildren. 

“If you confess with your mouth that ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”

“Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.”

Proceeded in death by his parents, Will and Addie Matthews; wife Laquita Matthews; sisters Ellen Matthews and Bobbie Parris; and brother Roy Matthews.

Derrell Matthews is survived by his children: Sarah and husband, John Stelzer, Debra Kay and husband ,Rodney Clinard, and Stephen and wife, Gina Matthews; grandchildren Jeremy Clinard, Joseph Stelzer, Jason Stelzer, Rebecca Stelzer, Josh Stelzer, Zachary Matthews and Addie Matthews; great-grandchildren Lilly Stelzer and Grace Stelzer; sister Mollie White; and brothers Leo Matthews and Benny Matthews.

Derrell and his entire family have been especially blessed by the love and devotion of Brenda. We love you and thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

Memorials may be made to Elm Ridge Church, 8757 Highway 11, Como, Texas 75431.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, May 6, 2014, at Elm Ridge Church with Bro. Rick Higgins officiating. Military graveside honors by the Hopkins County Military Coalition will follow at Woodland Cemetery. Visitation will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, May 5, 2014, at West Oaks Funeral Home.

Arrangements are under the direction of West Oaks Funeral Home.  www.westoaksfuneralhome.com

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