Originally created 12/30/04

'Symbol of Old South' loved family deeply



Relatives remember Margaret Elliott Evans as a kind, educated woman devoted to her family and her church.

Mrs. Evans, who died Friday, would have celebrated her 96th birthday in February.

The funeral was held Wednes-day at St. John United Methodist Church, with interment in Westover Memorial Park.

Born the 11th of 12 children to Corinthia Shipp and Robert Edward Elliott, the founders of Elliott Sons Funeral Home, Mrs. Evans was close to her siblings even in adulthood, nephew Herbert Elliott Jr. said.

"It was a very, very close-knit family and she was very proud of that," Mr. Elliott said. "Her family and her church were her primary emphases in life."

One of the few women of her generation to pursue higher education, Mrs. Evans graduated from the University of Georgia in 1933 with degrees in mathematics and vocal music. Her college years sparked a lifelong interest in UGA football, daughter Corinthia Greenway said.

"She was at the first football game at UGA in Sanford Stadium when they beat Yale 75 years ago," Mrs. Greenway said.

Mrs. Evans loved the Atlanta Braves and also played basketball and tennis in her youth, her daughter said.

After graduation, Mrs. Evans taught seventh-grade math at Joseph R. Lamar and John S. Davidson elementary schools.

At age 33, she married Joseph Whatley Evans and had three children, Mrs. Greenway said.

Mrs. Evans joined St. John United Methodist Church in 1921, where, as an active member of the church for 83 years, she sang in the choir and served in several leadership positions.

The Rev. Terry Phillips, a former pastor at St. John United Methodist church, knew Mrs. Evans for six years. "A very lovely lady," he said. "Well-educated and cultured. Really a symbol of the Old South."

Elliott Evans said his mother's easygoing personality contributed to her long life. Mrs. Greenway agreed.

"She was remembered as a happy lady who enjoyed life and she always had a twinkle in her eye," Mrs. Greenway said.

Mrs. Evans was preceded in death by her husband and is survived by her three children, retired Air Force Lt. Col. Joseph W. Evans Jr., Elliott Leary Evans and Corinthia Evans Greenway; seven grandchildren; and one great-grandson.

Reach Kate Lewis at (706) 823-3215 or kate.lewis@augustachronicle.com.