6/2/2008 - Judson bids farewell to Twynette Yeager
By Michael J. Brooks
The Judson College community is mourning the death of former college administrator Dr. Twynette Yeager. Yeager, 84, died in Huntsville on April 20.
Yeager will forever be remembered as "Twink" by her family and friends and by hundreds of her students as an honorary "Judson girl."
Yeager was born in Atmore on Feb. 18, 1924, to the Rev. 0.E. and Betty Lee Webb Wells. She graduated from Howard College (now Samford University) with a degree in business education and earned her master's and doctorate degrees in counseling and guidance from the University of Alabama.
She began her career at First Baptist Church in Atmore, where she was director of religious education. After serving as guidance counselor at Selma High School, Yeager became director of admissions at Judson College. In her 27-year career at the college, beginning in 1962, she was professor of education, chair of the department of education, acting academic dean and dean of students. She mentored young professionals who are now in education leadership positions across the state and beyond. She also served as director of alumnae affairs and director of recruitment.
After retirement, Yeager entered public service and spent eight years on the Marion City Council.
Marion mayor Tony Long took office during Yeager's last year of service, but he said she continued her involvement in city improvement.
"She was a fine woman," Long told The Perry County Herald.
"She always had the city's best interests at heart."
Other involvements included the Perry County Chamber of Commerce, the Alabama Tombigbee Commission on Aging, Alabama Historical Commission, Marion City School Board as director of curriculum projects, Marion Academy Board, board of directors of Sowing Seeds of Hope and the Committee of Humanities in Alabama.
Among her many awards and recognitions, Yeager received the Alabama Volunteer of the Year Award, Samford University School of Business Distinguished Alumni Award, honorary membership in the Alabama Senior Citizen Hall of Fame and the AAA Silver Star Award from the Associates of Alabama Agencies on Aging.
She is listed in "Who's Who in the South," "Southeast Outstanding Educators of America," "Who's Who in Alabama" and "Who's Who of American Women."
She was the first woman to serve on the Radio and Television Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention.
The funeral was held at Siloam Baptist Church in Marion on April 22, where she was a loyal member for over 45 years. Drs. David Potts and Earl Tew officiated. Burial was the following day in Oak Hill Cemetery in Atmore with Dr. Norman McCrummen, son of long-time Judson president Dr. N.H. McCrummen, officiating.
"Her city honors her by the visible improvements that she has championed and her willingness to always view the glass half full rather than half empty," said Judson president Dr. David Potts at Yeager's funeral. "Her enthusiasm, her ability to bring hope, her servant leadership, high standards and Christ-likeness are stamped on the minds and in the hearts of all who gather today and on Judson students for 27 years."
Yeager was preceded in death by her husband, Thomas B. Yeager, her parents and her sisters, Mrs. Melvin Nail and Mrs. Henry Love. She is survived by her two sons, William B. Watson Jr. and wife Mary Elizabeth of Huntsville, and Byron W. Watson and wife Jean of Newbern; daughter, Karen W. Thomas and husband John of Huntsville; stepdaughter, Susan Y. Wilbourne and husband Perry of Foley; eight grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
Memorial donations may be made in Yeager's memory to the 0.E. Wells and Twynette Wells Watson Yeager Scholarship Fund at Judson College, 302 Bibb Street, Marion, AL 36756; Hospice Family Care, 3304 Westmill Drive, Huntsville, AL 35805 or the American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22718, Oklahoma City, OK 73123-1718.
* Article courtesy of the Judson College Public Relations Department.