Family Histories of Coleman County, Texas

by Charlyne Griffith

From A History of Coleman County and Its People, 1985 
edited by Judia and Ralph Terry, and Vena Bob Gates - used by permission

Jodie Merle Griffith, son of Jodie Edwin and Annie (Bradley) Griffith, was born October 30, 1921 at Glen Cove.  He had one sister, Marjorie (Griffith) Wilson (see Ben M. Wilson).  Charlyne Mills was born in Santa Anna, November 2, 1928.  Her parents were Frank and Ola (Smedley) Mills.

Merle spent his early years in the Glen Cove community and went to school at New Central.  In 1934, the Griffith family moved to the Anderson community north of Coleman and Merle went to school in Coleman.  He graduated from Coleman High School in 1940.  On June 2, 1942, he entered the United States Marine Corps and served in the South Pacific with the Second Marine Division.  After combat action on Guadalcanal, he spent eleven months in a Naval hospital in Wellington, New Zealand, before returning to the States.  He was stationed at several Marine bases in the U.S before being discharged from the Corps and returning to Coleman on Thanksgiving Day, 1945.  He became a cattle auctioneer after graduating from Reich American School of Auctioneering in Mason City, Iowa, in 1947.  Charlyne grew up in Coleman, spending the first seven years of her life living with her family in the Coleman County jail.  Her father, Frank Mills, was sheriff of Coleman County at that time, and the family resided in the jail.  She was graduated from Coleman High School in 1946. Merle and Charlyne were married in Coleman on April 17, 1948 (see William F. (Frank) Mills).  He had ranching and cattle interests in Coleman County and sold several cattle auctions in central Texas at that time.  In May 1953, they moved to Clovis, New Mexico, where Merle continued his cattle business and was an auctioneer for Clovis Cattle Commission Company and the Amarillo Cattle Commission Company in Amarillo.  The couple had two daughters: Jodie Fran and Kay Lynn.  In July 1960, Merle and Charlyne with the girls moved to San Angelo.  On August 10, 1960, Merle was fatally injured in an automobile accident while returning from an auction sale in Wichita Falls.  After Merle’s untimely death, Charlyne, Jodie and Kay Lynn lived in Coleman until August 1962, when they moved to San Marcos.  Charlyne went back to school, received her degree from Southwest Texas State Univerity in 1967.  She taught at San Marcos High School from 1968 to 1980.  During these years she attended several different schools and traveled extensively.  At the present time Charlyne lives in San Antonio and is tour director for Thompson Travel Bureau, Inc. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Jodie Fran was born in Coleman on December 19, 1952.  She was five months old when the family moved to Clovis, New Mexico.  She started to school in Clovis, but graduated from San Marcos High School in 1970 and the University of Houston in 1973.  Jodie held many academic and community honors during her high school years.  She was a feature twirler at Southwest Texas State University and a member of Chi Omega Sorority and many other organizations.  Jodie was married to Steve Mark Sessom on July 15, 1972 in San Marcos.  They have two daughters, Staci Jo and Stormi Lee, and now live in Ozona, Texas.

Kay Lynn was born in Coleman, September 20, 1954.  She started to school at Talpa-Centennial but was graduated from San Marcos High School in 1972.  Following in the footsteps of her older sister, Jodie, she held many academic and community honors during her high school years.  She graduated from Southwest Texas State University in 1977.  While attending SWT, Kay Lynn was a twirler, a member of the Strutters, as well as many other campus organizations.  She was married to Steve Elliott Evans on October 18, 1980 at Columbus, Texas.  He lived the first eight years of his life in Talpa and attended first and second grades at Talpa-Centennial school.  Much to his dismay, his family moved to Columbus, where he graduated from Columbus High School in 1972.  He attended Sam Houston State University, where he was a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity.  In January, 1981, they moved to Talpa, where Steve has ranching interests.  They are active members of the Immanuel Baptist Church, where they teach the older youth group Sunday School Class.  Also, they are 4-H leaders and Steve is a member of the Talpa-Centennial School Board and Coleman Rodeo Association (see Everett Ernest Evans).

(Images to be added)

Jodie Fran, Charlyne and Merle and Kay Lynn Griffith

Staci, Jodie, Stormi and Steve Sessom

Kay Lynn and Steve Evans

Families History Index
Coleman County Index
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This page last updated August 14, 2005
© 1982 - 2005 Ralph Terry.  All rights reserved.