Funeral services for Lydia Bates Thrasher will be at 10 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 9, 2010, at the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church with Pastor Waymon Childress officiating. Interment will follow in the Pleasant Valley Cemetery.

    Lydia was born Jan. 12, 1922, near Fayetteville, Tenn. Lydia was married to the love of her life, John Henry Thrasher, on Dec. 23, 1941, in Madison County, Alabama. Two months after marrying, John joined the U.S. Army and left for World War II. Lydia was separated from John for four years and eight months. During that time, Lydia devoted her time to working at a shirt factory in Tennessee, writing daily love letters to John, and saving money for their future. John returned from the war in 1945, and together, the two left on a train for a new life out west.

    While having breakfast near the train station in Lubbock, Texas, John was offered a job in Sundown, Texas, and the two decided to stay. Another job opportunity a couple years later led Lydia and John to their home of almost 40 years in Andrews, Texas.

    Lydia and John’s family grew with the addition of three children, John Michael, Patsy Lee, and Steve Allan, over the next seven years. The family was Lydia’s focus as she was a Sunday school teacher, Cub Scout Den Mother, Girl Scout leader, homemaker, wife, mother, and friend. Lydia was a charter member of the Andrews Presbyterian Church.

    When her youngest child started to school, Lydia returned to working outside the home. Lydia was a loyal and hardworking employee of Andrews Public Schools, Permian General Hospital, Wentworth Manufacturing, and Kirby West in Andrews, Texas.

    In 1985, Lydia and John started their new life as retirees on North Lake Brownwood at Thunderbird Bay. However, Lydia’s time was never idle as she created beautiful afghans, heirloom quilts, designer clothing, and delicious baked goods for her family, grandkids and friends. Everyone Lydia knew enjoyed the fruits of her labor in the kitchen and the sewing room. Lydia and John made daily walks around Thunderbird Bay, took morning senior swims, and enjoyed the deer, and loved daily visits with friends. Lydia was an active member of the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church until recent years.

    Through the trials of life, one thing was almost constant and steadfast – the love of her family and her husband, John. John said it best, “Our honeymoon lasted 69 years.”

    Lydia was preceded in death by her daughter, Patsy Lee Lemons, earlier this year. Lydia is survived by her husband, John; and sons Mike and Steve. Lydia is loved by her in-laws, 10 grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren, and many devoted friends and family.

    Friends and relatives may sign her online guest book at

    Heartland Funeral Home of Early is in charge of arrangements.