Sarah KATHLEEN Stevenson was born in Childress, Texas, in August 3,1922 to Gaillen Leslie Griggs and Mary Eula Octavia McMahon Griggs. She was the third child and only daughter, with an older brother, John Lewis Griggs and a younger brother, James Emmitt Griggs. She grew up with few material things in Refugio, Texas, riding to school on a horse with big brother John. Her mother, Mary, was the daughter of an Irish immigrant, Thomas Patrick McMahon, who came to America at the beginning of the Civil War with two brothers. He fought in the Civil war and was given land grants in Rhode Island, Colorado, and west Texas, for his service. He served as from 1861 to 1864 as a private. He settled in Ben Wheeler, Texas, where he married Sarah Jane Mullins on May 5, 1855. They had 9 sons and 5 daughters. Three infants died and 11 survived. They are buried in Georges Creek Cemetery between Cleburne and Granbury. Sarah Jane was a member of the Methodist Church in Cleburne and was a life-long Christian considered to be a healer in a time when doctors were scarce. Twenty-seven grandchildren survived and subsequent great grandchildren were born by at the time of her death. Kathleen was one of those grandchildren.
To send flowers in memory of Kathleen Stevenson, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
Mary McMahon was born in Ben Wheeler, Texas, and later they moved to Cleburne where her father farmed. She married Gaillen Leslie Griggs and they moved to Childress, Texas. Gaillen Leslie Junior died in infancy, John Lewis was the second son who served in World War II. He lived with Mary and Gaillen much of his life, as did James Emmitt though James married a number of times. He has one son and three daughters. Kathleen married Vernon Stevenson in 1940. They produced three children, Joycelyn Ann Stevenson in August 30, 1941, Vernon Leslie (Les) Stevenson in March 16, 1946 and Mary Janette (Jan) Stevenson in July 15, 1949. Vernon also served in the Navy in World War II. He was stationed in Oklahoma, San Diego and Corpus Christi. They settled in Garland, Texas, after the Navy and moved to Fort Worth, Texas where they lived the remainder of their lives.
Kathleen was a creative and talented painter of portraits. She made, decorated and dressed porcelain dolls. She could sew things from as picture, without a pattern, sewing most of the clothes Joycelyn wore including her wedding dress and veil as well as things that Les and Jan wore as children. She covered upholstery and even upholstered a boat that Vernon had built. She had dropped out of high school to marry Vernon, whom she met in church. However, she got her GED in 1959, the year Joycelyn graduated high school. Later she was trained to be a nurse. She did not find that job rewarding and did not pursue it. She was a searcher, always reading and studying and questioning religions, including Eastern religions. The last eight years of her life she lived at Brookdale in North Richland Hills, and then Richland Hills, eventually in the memory care unit. She did not walk during those years moving around in her wheelchair until the last year. During that time she broke her hip, had a skin cancer on her face requiring surgery and eventually lost most of her sight. She was loved by the people who served her during that time. Those who knew her in her early years respected her for her knowledge and her beauty. She will be missed.