Charley Belle Stanley suddenly found herself a single woman in 1970 with the death of husband Miles. Supported by her children and grandchildren, she soon ventured out into the working world, securing employment at Cox’s Department Store in Fort Worth. Life goes on and bills gotta be paid.
Charley Belle’s mother, Mary Tennessee Rogers, known as “Mawmaw” to family and friends, had come to live in the Stanley home in the late 1960’s. Charley Belle continued to care for her and in 1971, Mary died at home at age 91.
Charley Belle continued to work at Cox’s and was active in her church, St Mark’s Methodist. Her home was frequently invaded by grandchildren and numerous friends.
In the late 1970’s, Charley Belle sold the house on Townsend Drive and moved to nearby Crowley, Texas, the home of daughters Jan and Kathy and their families. The new house on West Skelly Street quickly became the hub of the extended Stanley family, as great-grandchildren began to appear. Mother-in-law Marie “MaMaw” Stanley died in 1979, and Charley Belle helped to care for her until her death.
Charley Belle eventually retired from Cox’s Department Store, but she “retired” in word only, as she stayed busy as secretary for St Mark’s Methodist Church and as Nanny to all the grandkids and great-grandkids. The house on Skelly was rarely quiet! Birthdays and holidays were celebrated at Nanny’s house and friends and neighbors frequently stopped by. Charley Belle also took occasional trips with her church friends, visiting locations as far away as New York City.
Charley Belle remained healthy and active well into her 80’s, driving to church and running errands, and even baby-sitting those great-great grandchildren. However, in 2001, she was slowed by “mini-strokes”, necessitating the move to daughter Kathy’s home in Kempner, Texas. There she lived for a few more years, before moving to retirement homes in Burleson and Lampasas, Texas.
On 16 May 2014, Charley Belle Stanley died peacefully in her sleep at age 97 in Lampasas. She lived a productive and happy live, and left many loving grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren, and a host of friends. She is buried next to the love of her life, Miles and near son Mike at Greenwood Cemetery in Fort Worth. She is missed every day.