Lillie Irene Tate, daughter of the late Ben and Ida (Raney) Grimes, was born Dec. 10, 1916, in Wright County, Mo., and passed away Oct. 19, 2015, in Cabool, Mo. She was 98 years, 10 months, and 9 days of age.
Irene was raised in the Grimes and Owens communities of Wright County. Her grandparents owned and operated Grimes Mill and they also had an apple orchard. She enjoyed spending time there and helping with whatever needed done.
As she grew older, Irene started courting a handsome young man named Virgil, who would ride a white horse to come see her. They soon fell in love and would begin a life together. Irene was united in marriage to Virgil E. Tate on Nov. 30, 1935 in Graff, Mo. Ten children were born to this union.
Irene accepted Jesus as her Savior at an early age at the Green Mountain Church. At that time, her family lived in the Astoria community and Irene would walk to Green Mountain to attend church services. Later in life Irene and Virgil became charter members of the Hopewell Free Will Baptist Church, where she also served as treasurer for many years. She attended many other churches throughout her life, including Oak Grove Free Will Baptist Church. She also liked listening to gospel music and attending singings. Irene remained faithful to God.
Irene was a loving woman with a kind heart. She was an independent woman who worked hard at whatever tasks the day held. Irene worked at HD Lee for about seven years, but was a devoted homemaker for her family. She was always dressed well and looked very pretty. Irene was a great cook who made unforgettable homemade biscuits. Irene was a good seamstress and enjoyed embroidery. She also loved family gatherings and always looked forward to spending time with family and friends.
Besides her parents, Irene was preceded in death by her husband, Virgil E. Tate; her daughter, Verna Ruth Tate; four brothers, Harold, Earl, Ralph and Claude Grimes; and one sister, Mary Ellen Wood.
She is survived by four sons, Gilbert Tate of Choctaw, Okla., Delbert Tate and wife, Brenda, of Mountain Grove, Mo., Nolan Tate and wife, Ellen, of Cabool, Mo., and Dwaine Tate and wife, Kathy, of Norwood, Mo.; five daughters, Lillie Campbell and husband, Elvin, of Kansas City, Mo., Erma Campbell and husband, Clifford, of Bucyrus, Mo., Louise Sponsler and husband, Hubert, of Tulsa, Okla., Della Rumfelt and husband, Arles, of Norwood, Mo., and Anita Hurley and husband, Jim, of Mountain Grove, Mo.; 23 grandchildren; 47 great-grandchildren; 10 great-great grandchildren; and a host of other relatives and friends who will dearly miss her.
Funeral services were 2 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, at Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home with the Rev. RE Helsley speaking. Song were: “Gathering Flowers For The Master’s Bouquet;” “When I’ve Traveled My Last Mile;” and “Going Home” provided by the Moore family. Serving as pallbearers were grandsons Allen Tate, Gary Campbell, Terry Campbell, Darren Tate, Jammie Hurley, Rodney Tate, Daniel Rumfelt, Terry Tate, and Stephen Sponsler. Burial was in Hopewell Cemetery under the direction of the Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home of Mountain Grove.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Hopewell Cemetery in care of Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home.
Online condolences: www.craighurttfuneralhome.com.