Biography of William Thurston BEASLEY

Banana Sandwiches:

People have different opinions about what makes for a good and long life. If there was anyone who you could say was a natural vegetarian, that would be him. He didn't smoke, chase women, nor drink. He didn’t gamble, swear nor cause anyone any harm. In fact, we don’t know that Thurston had any vices. His idea of a real treat and a good life was banana sandwiches and family.


Thurston met his future wife Ellie Ingram at what they called a “milk party” in those days and it was love at first sight. It took some convincing and time, but Ellie agreed to wed and they were married in 1939. They waited to have children until his career was established. He is survived by two daughters and his wife.

Thurston’s roots are deep in Coosa County. He lived his entire life in the Hanover and Stewartville area. His Great-grandfather, Henry Larkin Beasley, was residing in the county before 1849. A niece, who is interested in the family history pestered Thurston into going over the countryside in the 1990’s and retelling what he knew about the family. Thurston would think on where a family place had been and even though he had not been there for 50 years, he would direct her right to the spot. But he didn’t like cemeteries – they made the hair stand up on the back of his neck.


He worked for and retired from the Avondale Mills. He never missed work and he had the attendance awards to prove it. After retirement, he took care of the grounds at the Stewartville School for many years. Up into his 80’s he continued working part-time jobs. Always needing to be busy, he did woodworking at a very advanced age. He did some nice carvings and folk-art for awhile.

Young at Heart:

In his middle 80’s Thurston started going to Jazzercise sessions at the community center. He was the only man there amongst many women and, therefore, very popular. Once in awhile, he would miss a session and invariably one of the jazzercise ladies would telephone and ask if he was coming. Ellie, his wife, never seemed too concerned. He also golfed occasionally in his 80's. He used two golf clubs: a driver and a putter. The golf balls didn’t go far but they did go straight. And I guess that’s one thing you could say about Thurston, he was a straight shooter and you could rely upon him through thick and thin.

© 2009 Mark Fields. This work may be reproduced and redistributed, in whole or in part, without alteration and without prior written permission solely for genealogy research purposes, provided all copies contain the following statement: " © 2009 Mark Fields. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of Mark Fields, his heirs, or assigns."

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Funeral arrangements:
Viewing 9 May 2007 ; 6-8pm
Service: Bethany Methodist Church 10 May 2007 ; 2pm
Internment - Andrews Chapel Cemetery, Hanover, AL 10 May 2007.

Known as "Thurston" to family and friends, William Thurston Beasley was the eldest child & only son of William Patterson Beasley & his wife Ola Catherine Smith Beasley. Growing up, Thurston loved basketball and in high school at Weogufka, he was given the nickname of "hungry" as he was tall, lean, and always in search of something to eat. On 9 Sept 1939 Thurston married his one true love, Ellie Ingram. Together, Thurston & Ellie lived in the Stewartville area of Coosa County & raised their two children. A retiree of Avondale Mills, Thurston loved to garden and enjoyed wood-carving. He was always fond of music & dancing yet he was known to all for his dry humor, quiet fortitude, and devotion to friends, family, and God. Thurston died as he always lived, quietly and at peace. Written by a niece.