Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Marjorie Boatright Edenfield 1920-2006

Marjorie Boatright Edenfield, 85, of Millen died Sunday, Feb. 12, 2006.

Graveside services were held at noon on Tuesday, Feb. 14, at the Millen Cemetery.

She was born Dec. 13, 1920, eldest of the seven children of Fred and Ella Moore Boatright. She graduated from Claxton High School in 1937 as class salutatorian because, as she later explained, "I had more fun than the valedictorian!

"She arrived in Millen at age 18, in the front seat of an open cockpit bi-plane. The pilot, a Millen cousin, came to dinner and invited her to fly home with him. Her father gave a firm. "No! She can't go up in that thing! "But, her mother whispered, "Get your things, Honey, and go flying; I'll take care of your daddy.

"Her first flight, in that front cockpit, open to the sky and to the world around, soaring over farms and forests from the Canoochee to the Ogeechee rivers, gave to young Marjorie Boatright a lasting love for the natural beauty of Georgia.

All of her ancestors had settled in old Burke, Emanuel, Bulloch and Montgomery counties from before the American Revolution to no later than the first quarter of the 19th century. Most of those lands were then still Indian territory.

The first Boatright in Georgia, Daniel, settled in the 1780's on the Ogeechee River, near Herndon, where he married the daughter of KINDRED BRASWELL. In the 1790s, he moved his family to higher ground nearby, a'hammock' thick with mayhaw bushes; thus began the "Hawhammock" community of Emanuel County, center of the Boatright family to this day.

Marjorie Boatright graduated from Georgia Teacher's College (now Georgia Southern University.) In recent years, she helped her old school build its historic collections through donating her own college scrapbook and other records.

She taught in the schools of Ogeechee, Millen, Wadley and Sardis for many years; and, after earning a master's degree in counseling, in Waynesboro.

Mrs. Edenfield was among the most beloved and admired teachers of her generation in Georgia. Many students credited her with laying the foundation of their own success in life. Her reputation for creativity in teaching and for the human touch was legendary.

Of her own closely-knit Boatright family, she is survived by Jack Boatright of Claxton, Mrs. Dorman DeLoach of Nevils and Mrs. Walt Singletary of Savannah.

Mrs. James Lewis, Mac Boatright and James F. Boatright predeceased her.

She married the late Wallace Edenfield of Millen in 1942. They were the parents of Meralyn Edenfield Godbee Smith, Vernon Edenfield and Brian Edenfield; grandparents of Craig Godbee, Hayley Godbee Green, Jason Edenfield and Lauren Edenfield; and the great-grandparents of four.

Memorial gifts may be made to the Millen or Claxton public libraries.

Crowe-Fields Funeral Home of Millen was in charge of arrangements.

Waynesboro, GA The True Citizen