Obituaries

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Nancy Jane Anderson Thurmond

1926 ~ 2021

There will be a private graveside service for the family. But Nancy carefully planned her funeral, and we will carry out her wishes with a memorial service at Broadway Baptist Church when it is safe to gather.

If you would like to make a donation, Nancy asked that you consider the Endowed Scholarship Fund at Baylor University; Broadway Baptist Church at broadwaybc.org; Buckner International, 700 North Pearl St, Ste. 1200, Dallas, TX 75201; or a charity of your choice.

Nancy Jane Anderson Thurmond died peacefully on January 12, 2021 at the age of 94.

She was born on September 1, 1926 to Naomi Tidwell Anderson and Leonard Robinson Anderson, Jr. She was raised with her sister, Margaret Sue, first in Venus, Texas, then in Wills Point, Texas where her parents operated a dry goods store. Early on it was clear that Nancy loved to run the show. In fourth grade she appointed herself classroom monitor, blocking the door and requiring her fellow students to spell Tigris and Euphrates before she’d let them through the door. But the door to the Anderson home was always open, and they welcomed guests of all ages. They were active in the First Baptist Church where Nancy was baptized at the age of eight. She was the high school Valedictorian, and after several college scholarship offers she settled on Baylor University. At Baylor, she was a member of Sigma Tau Delta, Kappa Delta Pi, and Alpha Omega Club. She was active in the Baptist Student Union, music groups, and other scholastic activities.

After graduation Nancy was hired as a teacher at Oakhurst Elementary in Fort Worth, Texas. In 1951 she married James Carroll Thurmond, the love of her life. Together they were active in Broadway Baptist Church where they were both deacons and taught adult classes for many years. Nancy was past president of the Woman’s Missionary Union and served as chairperson and member of too many church committees to name. To the end she held an unbroken loyalty to Broadway Baptist Church, and at the age of 93, she wrote a personal history of her more than 70 years as a member there.

Nancy joined the Junior Woman’s Club in 1958 and served as president from 1962-63. Upon transferring to the Woman’s Club she became active in the Monday Book Club where she served as president, and remained active until she was 90. She was on the Woman’s Club’s Board of Directors, served as Treasurer and also served on various committees. In the 60s, she was president of the Mockingbird Garden Club, which helped start some of the early hike and bike trails in Ft. Worth.

Nancy valued education and was selected to be a trustee at Howard Payne University in 1980. In 1991 she was invited to serve on the Board of Regents for Baylor University, which she did for the next nine years. She and her late husband Jim established an endowed scholarship at Baylor University. She also served on the Board of Directors of the Presbyterian Night Shelter for six years.

Nancy received her Realtor’s license in 1972 and remained an active Broker Associate of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage where she held the designation of Broker, Graduate of the Realtors Institute (GRI), and Certified Residential Specialist (CRS). She excelled in the company and in 1994 received the Scotty Award. In the summer of 2016, only a few months before her 90th birthday, over 100 people came to her retirement party. After the party was over she sat before her computer and renewed her realtor’s license. She just couldn’t let it go.

Obviously, Nancy was extremely hard working, determined and proud. The word “bored” was not in her vocabulary, and she had more energy than all of her four kids put together. She made a point to stay informed, starting with her morning read of The Star Telegram to her evening watch of the PBS NewsHour. Nancy was always open to new ideas. She was blessed with many friends of all ages and all sorts who found her to be funny, smart, interesting, open-minded, opinionated, encouraging and trustworthy. She loved her sister Margaret Sue, but above all she cherished the years that she spent with her beloved husband Jim, who died in 2009.

She loved her family — her four children, six grandchildren, and thirteen great-grandchildren. She is survived by her sons Jim Thurmond of Eugene, Oregon and Steve Thurmond of Albuquerque, New Mexico and his wife Susan Neal, daughters Nancy Broyles of Dallas and Jane Thurmond of Austin. Grandchildren and their families include Ben and Jen Broyles of Dallas, Sam and Christina Broyles and children Dawson, Reid and Caroline of Lucas, Texas, Carroll and Casey Gurganus and children Anna, Will and Luke of Dallas, Harris and Laura Thurmond and children Audrey and Veronica of Austin, April and Daniel Porter and children Laney, Skylar, Jordin, Taylor and Bo of Queens Creek, Arizona and Allie Kleinberg of Atlanta, Georgia. She is also survived by nieces and nephews Bill Allen Thurmond, Gerald Thurmond, Bob Cooper, Claire Cooper Black and their families; as well as numerous cousins, extended family and friends, and lots of dogs.

We would like to especially thank her incredible caregivers that have become part of our family, Sarah Hightower, Amy Johnson, and Bertram Frierson, as well as the wonderful RAs and staff at the Vantage at Cityview Assisted Living where Nancy resided since late 2016. And finally, thanks to the scores of attentive friends, neighbors, coworkers, fellow residents, and church members who brought so much joy to her life every day. According to Nancy, every day was “a really good day.”