Dorsie Mae Smith Ferguson Wilson

Dorsie Mae Smith Ferguson Wilson, 96, of Gause, passed away Tuesday, March 7, 2017, in Hearne.

Visitation was held from 1-6 p.m. Friday, March 10, 2017, at Glenn Mack Funeral Home in Hearne.

A Celebration of Life honoring Dorsie Wilson was held at 1 p.m. Saturday, March 11, 2017, at Stephen Chapel AME Church in Gause. Rev. Linda Wallace was pastor and eulogist. Interment was in Gause Peaceful Rest Cemetery.

Dorsie Mae Smith Ferguson Wilson, the eldest of six children, was born in Lexington on Dec. 30, 1920, to the late Professor Doyle Shelton Smith Sr. and Mrs. Luella Mitchell Smith. In 1931, her family moved to Gause. She helped her father raise her siblings upon the early death of her mother in 1934. After completing her elementary and junior high work in Gause, she graduated from the Calvert Colored High School in Calvert. She married Ferris Ferguson, and to this union four children were born, Frank Edward, who proceeded her in death, Ferias, Delores and LaVerne.

In July of 1949, her husband died, leaving her with three children. In spite of being a widow with three children to support, she decided to further her education by attending Paul Quinn College in Waco where she fulfilled requirements for graduation to qualify her as a certified nurse. She interned and later worked at Providence Hospital in Waco. She returned to Gause and later married Ernest Wilson in 1958 who died in 1965. Twice widowed, Dorsie maintained and demonstrated strong faith, courage, dignity and determination and placed much emphasis on educating her children. Dorsie often characterized the achievements of her offspring as one of her most rewarding accomplishments.

Dorsie joined Stephen Chapel AME Church at a very early age, where she actively served in the areas of: Sunday School Superintendent for 50 year, YPD Director, secretary of the Trustee Board, Stewardess, church secretary until 1992 (almost 40 years), secretary of Joint Missionary Society, and was president of the Missionary Soceity.

From 1966 to 1984 she was employed by the Gause Independent School District as a nurse for the Head Start Program and physical education instructor. In 1972, after becoming certified as kindergarten teacher, she was employed to fill that position which she held until retirement in 1984.

She spent many hours in community service. She served as secretary of the Gause Improvement Program (GIP) and Gause Peaceful Rest Cemetery Association and was 4-H leader. She held membership in the Retired Teachers Association, Gause Volunteer Fire Department, Gause Achievers Club (serving as secretary) and the Milam County Extension and Homemakers, Milam County Teachers Association and the AARP. She received many awards for her service and achievements.

Dorise Wilson leaves to cherish her memories: three children, Ferais Ferguson Sr. and Nobie, Delores Fisher and Johnny, and LaVerne Ferguson Ratcliff; two siblings, Mary Alma Gray and John V. Smith and Elaine; four grandchildren, Gayle Ferguson, Derrick Ferguson, Ratessalyn Ferguson and Ferias Ferguson Jr.; three great-grandchildren, Garlen Smith, Garrett Smith and Rylan Jones; nieces, Alvie Joyce Hammond and Leon, Verdie Sadberry, Gwendolyn Holloway and Reginald, Marilyn Griggs, Michelle Sylvain and Keith, Earnestine Smith, Cherlyn Peppercorn, Paula Smith, and Monica Smith; nephews, William Doyle Gray and Agnes, Danny Petty, Bishop John M. Smith and Phyllis, James M. Smith, and Thomas M. Smith; many other relatives and friends.

Arrangements and care entrusted to Glenn Mack Funeral Home in Hearne.