Ethel Mae Rowland, of Searcy passed away on May 12, 2019 at the age of 88, surrounded by her loving family. Mae, as everyone knew her, was born on May 22, 1930 in Elaine, Arkansas to Henry and Pearl Welch. Growing up the daughter of a sharecropper in the great depression was not ideal. Rather than recalling that time as unfortunate, she reminisced that she was rich with love of family as she had four brothers and seven sisters.
She married Clifford Rowland in 1949 and had 5 children, they were parted by his death in 1992. Mae worked in the medical field starting as a medical assistant in a doctor’s office, then as a nurse’s aide after moving to Searcy in 1972. She worked at the Porter Rogers Hospital and Central Arkansas Hospital, from which she retired after 14 years of service. She continued to work as a private care nurse with steadfast dedication for an additional 20 years. Mae was a generous and loving mother who instilled the importance of respect and honesty within her children.
Mae is preceded in death by her husband, Clifford and two sons; Carl and Bobby.
She is survived by three children, Linda Hodge of Searcy, Ronny Rowland of Searcy and Barry Rowland of Searcy, one brother, Johnny Welch of Memphis, Tennessee, three sisters; Gracie Smith of Dexter Missouri, Naomi Pryor of Nashville, Tennessee and Mary Welch of Tumball, Texas. Nine grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren, and eight great-great-grandchildren, and a host of extended family and friends.
A ceremony will be held at Searcy McEuen Funeral Home at 2:00 pm on Wednesday, May 15, 2019. She will be cremated and laid to rest beside her late husband. Mae’s wishes are that in lieu of flowers a donation be made to St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Any family or friends who want to speak or share any stories about Mae will be given time at the ceremony.
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