Dorothy Banfield

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Dorothy Banfield, 95, passed away on Wednesday, March 5, 2014, at Autumn Leaves of Denton, Denton, TX. She was born Dorothy Frances McMahan on November 29, 1918, in Van Alstyne, Texas, to Eli Franklin McMahan and Minnie K. Fowler McMahan.

Dorothy graduated from Van Alstyne High School in 1936; received a BS degree from North Texas State Teachers College (University of North Texas), Denton, in 1941; and taught in the Dorchester and Celina schools for a short time. She then worked for North American Aviation in Grand Prairie and retired as a home economist from Lone Star Gas Company, Denison, in 1948. Dorothy and Dr. Fred Radcliffe Banfield met through mutual friends and married in 1948. They decided to make Whitesboro, Texas, their home; and Dorothy often assisted in his office. From 1962-1964 Dorothy served as Administrator of the Whitesboro Nursing Home, which she and Fred co-owned.

Dorothy was a member of First United Methodist Church of Whitesboro and was involved in many areas of the church from transportation for the youth to membership on the Official Board. She was an active member of the Girl Scout organization for thirteen years and served in many capacities such as troop leader, neighborhood chairman, camp director, and board member of Cross Timbers Council. While a troop leader, she and a co-leader trained and supervised the first group of Girl Scouts from Cross Timbers Council to be accepted for a session at the International Center, Nuestra Cabana, Cuernavaca, Mexico.

Dorothy was an Election Judge for many years, a member of the Whitesboro Library Board (from its inception) for 25 years, a member of the Urban Renewal Board, a member of the Penny-Wise Investment Club, a member and past president of Modern Arts Club of Whitesboro, and a charter member and first president of Grayson County Texas Genealogical Society. During this presidency she served as Book Committee Chairman for the publication of "Ancestors and Descendants," which won the Texas Historical Commission Award for Best Personal County History of 1981.

Dorothy was active in the Republican Party, having served as Precinct Chairman, member of the Grayson County Executive Committee, and delegate to county and state conventions. She served for four years as Vice-Chairman of the Grayson County Republican organization, president of Grayson County Texas Republican Women, and District Director and board member of Texas Republican Women. She was elected to the Electoral College in 1984 and was an alternate delegate to the Republican National Convention in New Orleans in 1988.

Dorothy served on the Whitesboro Economic and Industrial Development Corporation boards, the Sullivan House Preservation Board, and the Grayson County Sesquicentennial/Millennium Committee. In her early 80s she co-chaired the committee to build a new Whitesboro Public Library, her crowning achievement.

Dorothy received the 1997 Woman of the Year award from the Contemporary Woman's Club, Whitesboro; Community Builder Award from the Masonic Grand Lodge of Texas; the 1999 Humanitarian of the Year Award; and the 2004 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Whitesboro Chamber of Commerce.

Dorothy was preceded in death by her husband "Dr. Fred" R. Banfield; parents Frank and Minnie McMahan; brothers George, Carl, Lewis and Frank McMahan; and sisters Cozette Springfield, Ruth Webb Hood, Marie McMahan, and Bertha Light. She is survived by her children: Jacqueline Banfield of Sherman; Patricia Sewell and husband Terry of Denton; Cherie Roche and husband John Dean of Virginia Beach, Virginia; and Fred Banfield and wife Melanie of Morrison, Colorado. She is also survived by her grandchildren: Adam Settles and wife Jessica of Denton; Nicole Banfield of Fort Collins, Colorado; Megan Roche and Michael Dean of Virginia Beach, Virginia; and Jordan and Hanna Banfield of Morrison, Colorado. Dorothy is also survived by her great-grandson, Nolan Settles, of Denton.

Dorothy's family would like to thank the staff and caregivers at Autumn Leaves of Denton for the care and love they have shown her. The family would also like to thank Heart to Heart Hospice. A private graveside service and burial will be held in Whitesboro. Arrangements are being made with Meador Funeral Home, Whitesboro, TX.


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