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Thelma Letha Arbor
1925 ~ 2024 (age 98) 98 Years Old
32 Trees, Flowers, or Condolences have been shared with support of Thelma's family - View on Tribute Wall
REFLECTIONS OF LIFE
“To everything there is a season.
And a time to every purpose under the heaven”
“A Time to be Born”
Thelma Leatha Arbor was born to Sylvester and Amanda Elston-Arbor on March 4, 1925, in Cotton Plant,
AR. She was the tenth child of twelve brothers and sisters. Thelma professed her faith in Christ, and
united with Taylor Chapel United Methodist Church, the church of the Arbor family since it’s early
“A Time to Grow”
Thelma graduated from the Cotton Plant Presbyterian Academy in 1943. After graduating high school,
she attended Arkansas AM&N College in Pine Bluff, AR and graduated in 1948 with a Bachelor of Science
Degree in Education. In 1962 she received a Master of Education degree from the University of Arkansas
in Fayetteville, AR. She was one of the earlier African American students to receive a master’s degree in
education from the University. After her college graduation at AM&N she started her career as a Home
Economics Teacher at Columbia High School, Magnolia, AR. She later began teaching Home Economics
at Magnolia High School. Thelma taught for 41 years in the school system.
“A Time to Live”
Thelma was a very active member of the St. Phillip AME Church in Magnolia, AR. She served as a
trustee, church steward, and on numerous committees. Thelma attended many church conferences and
conventions. She was a Hall of Fame member of the West Arkansas Women’s Missionary Society of the
12 th Episcopal District AME Church. Thelma also held several offices in the district, including trustee. She
was a member and officer of Columbia County NAACP. Thelma was an active supporter of the UAPB
Alumni Association and attended many homecoming celebrations. Her greatest enjoyment in
retirement was traveling. Thelma was one of the original charter members of the “Traveling Friends”
travel group. They traveled all across the United States and some trips outside of the U.S. to foreign
countries. She was blessed to live a long, healthy, and independent life. All her family members pray
that they inherit her genes, which include lifelong mental intelligence, physical stamina, and abundant
“A Time to Go to Her Eternal Home”
Thelma said she had been blessed with a long life, primarily good physical health, and a sharp mine until
the end. She was at peace to go to her heavenly home after 98 years and 10 months of life on this
earth. She was preceded in death by her parents Sylvester and Amanda Arbor; four brothers -Sylvester
Arbor, Jr. (infancy), Clinton Arbor, Mackwell Arbor, and James Arbor; six sisters – Amanda Chunn, Dovie
Dozier, Ruby Williams, Dorthia Ferron, Mildred Dorsey, Trilby Scroggins, and Sylvia Pickett.
Thelma had no children, but she was dearly loved by her many nieces and nephews. Aunt Thelma was
the strong root of the family tree that ensured the Arbor family values and legacy would continue to go forth.