Leona Christine Chadwick Alexander, 83, passed away at Community Springs Nursing Facility in El Dorado Springs on August 18, 2018.
Christine was born on June 18, 1935 in McCory, Arkansas, in Woodruff County to Rupert and Jewell Chadwick. She spent her younger hers in Arkansas with her parents who were sharecroppers. She has told many times how she picked cotton alongside her mother and how heavy the sacks of cotton were. She attended most of her elementary school years in Arkansas. As a young teenager the family moved to the BlackJack community in Missouri. She attended High School in El Dorado Springs and graduated in 1953. She has many fond memories of her high school years, the best of these the years she spent playing with the girls’ basketball team. Many times she pointed out classmates who played alongside her.
After graduation, she went to Kansas City where she worked at National Bellas Hess, a catalog store. After her time in Kansas City she moved back to El Dorado Springs where she met Ronald Alexander. Their first date was on New Year’s Eve, 1955. They doubled dated with some close friends, going to a movie and eating a early morning breakfast on New Year’s Day. The next day Ronald got up early to go to church with Chris. It was more to impress her Mom than her. They were married on February 18, 1956 and provided a wonderful home for their five children, Ronnie Earl, Rhonda Gail, Gary Lynn, Pamela Sue and Bonnie Jeanne. Even though, theirs was a blended family, their kids were always known as the Alexander kids. They raised their children to show love and respect for them and for God. Every Christmas after their children were grown, they would cook a breakfast feast for the family. Ronald always kept a little note pad of how much of what was prepared the year before. Ron and Chris always requested that the Christmas story be read as a reminder of God’s love.
Ronald and Chris were involved in several ventures in the fifty-eight years of their marriage. Chris kept books for Alexander Trucking. She also kept books and managed Alexander Apartments and Emerald Hill Apts. They oversaw the building of numerous houses in El Dorado Springs. Chris stained and varnished doors and woodwork for most of these homes including a spacious home they built on Hwy 82 North of town. She loved living on the farm and they lived there for most of their married life. She loved digging in the dirt and planting a big garden and growing beautiful flowers.
Chris was saved at a young age and was a member of the Speedwell Southern Baptist Church until her health made her unable to attend. She was an avid believer in Vacation Bible School, many times acting as Director. She was always involved in one way or another. She worked at Baptist Hill and Baptist Ridge Church Camps. She also taught Sunday School as long as she was able.
Chris loved people and was involved in many civic organizations. She was a member of Iris Belles Garden Club, serving multiple offices locally and state wide. She was a member of the Wonder City Doll Club and has a doll collection to prove it. As a younger woman she loved Girl Scouts and many women in the community tell us how much fun she was. She served as a Girl Scout leader while her girls grew from Brownies to Senior Scouts. She had annual camp outs on the farm North of town, camping right along with the girls.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Rupert and Jewell Chadwick; her husband, Ronald Alexander; a brother, Eugene Chadwick; a sister, Sharon Adams; and a son, Ronnie Earl Alexander.
She is survived by her son, Gary Alexander (Colleen) of Springfield; daughters, Rhonda Boch (Mark); Pam Julian; and Bonnie Jeanne Taylor (Carl). All of her daughters live in the El Dorado Springs area. She is also survived by one sister, Janice Turner of Sunrise Beach, MO.
Chris played such an integral part in her families’ lives. She has sixteen grand-children, eleven great grandchildren, plus two on the way and thirty-four great great grandchildren plus one on the way. She will be missed by those who knew and loved her.