Emma Ann Stafford Steele departed this life to be with her Lord on March 7, 2007, and the heavenly chorus gained a first-rate alto. She was born in Trigg, Virginia on March 30, 1929 to Frank Lafayette Stafford and Nina Hetherington Stafford. She was blessed with four siblings to share a country upbringing – Maurice Stafford, Donald Stafford, Francis Stafford Bowling and Charlotte Stafford Sartin. She enjoyed their spouses, Pearl Stafford, Lois Stafford, Bill Bowling and Pat Sartin, and they shared many a Stafford Christmas party through the years. She married Buford Steele in 1951 and had four children – Steven Denny Steele, Timothy Stafford Steele, Susan Andrea Steele-Ward and Phillip Cormany Steele.
She had a happy reunion March 7 with her mother and father, brother Maurice, son Steven and many other relatives who preceded her. She was very proud to be the matriarch of the Steele clan including grandchildren (spouses in parentheses) Stephen Steele (Michelle), Patrick Steele (Kelly), Brandon Steele (Tina), Micah Steele (Kelly), Scarlett Steele Shirey (Kevin), Andrea Ward, Alex Ward, Samuel Steele, Olivia Steele, Sophie Steele and Ellowyn Steele; great-grandchildren Abby Steele, Hannah Steele, Nolan Steele, Cohen Steele, Gabriel Steele, Macy Steele and Kaitlyn Steele with three more on the way. She was blessed with three daughters in law, Vicki Steele, Sheila Steele and Laurie Steele, and son in law, Thomas Ward.
Emma Ann Stafford attended Radford College as did her two sisters, and they all went on to fulfilling teaching careers. She began teaching at Eggleston, moved to Newport Elementary after marrying and retired from Eastern Elementary after thirty-six years of teaching.
Arrangements are by Kendall Funeral Home in Pembroke. The family will receive friends and relatives Friday from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Newport-Mt. Olivet United Methodist Church, and the funeral will be Saturday at 11:00 a.m. at the church.
Memorial donations may be made to the Newport-Mt. Olivet United Methodist Church. Online condolences may be sent by visiting kendallfuneralhome.com.