Edythe Deene Bell Knox passed away August 13, 2011, of natural causes. She was born in Oklahoma City on December 30, 1924. While serving as a Cadet Nurse during World War II in Coronado, California, she met and married Ray Knox on December 21, 1942. Edythe headed up the Neonatal Unit of a major Oklahoma City hospital and worked with renowned urologist Dr. Russell Scott during her 45 year nursing career. She received her Bachelors of Science – Nursing degree from Texas Women’s University.
Ray and Edythe moved permanently to Blanco County, Texas in 1978. During their time residing in Blanco County, Edythe touched many lives through her medical calling. She was instrumental in the resurrection of EMS services for all of Blanco County, riding the ambulance as the RN, overseeing training and certification of numerous EMS Technicians, and helping with fund raising to bring two full time ambulances to the Blanco Volunteer Fire Department. She was the driving force behind the Wellness Center at Gem of the Hills, developing an exercise program and obtaining grant funding for the walking trail and exercise room renovation and equipment. Through her connection with the Gem of the Hills and Meals on Wheels, she delivered meals with Ray and assisted with the Lunches of Love program with Connie Granberg and Cindy Hounsell.
Edythe also turned her attention to programs focusing on education and advancement of young people. She and Ray funded an annual scholarship through All Faiths Chapel for a graduating high school senior to help with college expenses. Together with Phyllis Holms Streeter, Edythe worked with the Friends of the Library to nurture growth of the library and reading programs for Blanco youth. And she enjoyed talking sports to any teenager she came across.
Continuing her service orientation, once a month on Wednesdays you could find Edythe at the Good Samaritan working to assist families with clothing and food needs. Ray and Edythe also were among the original founders of Citizens for County Unity, drawing couples together for understanding of County issues and service opportunities. Blanco County will miss her volunteer spirit.
Edythe leaves her brother, Dr. Eugene Bell of Tishomingo, Oklahoma, two daughters, Kristi Downey residing in Grand Rapids, Michigan and Jan Mathews of Houston, Texas, together with their husbands, Dr. Gordon Downey and Stan Mathews, her two grandchildren, Ryan and Chenin Mathews, a nephew Dr. Patrick Bell, numerous great nieces and nephews, and many friends. Edythe touched many lives with her loving spirit. She was blessed to be a blessing. A memorial service will be held in December, Edythe’s birthday month, to celebrate her life. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Wellness Center at Gem of the Hills to honor Edythe.