A REFLECTION OF LIFE “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. Henceforth, there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me on that day: and not to me only, but all them also that love his appearing.” II Timothy 4:6-8 The month of May is one of the most beautiful times of the year. It’s a time for spring and growth: a time when the snow and ice are gone, gardens begin to sprout, and flowers begin to blossom. So it was in the McBride household on May 20, 1937. The family began to grow when a beautiful baby girl, whom they named Ethel, was born. It was a joyous day for Mr. and Mrs. McBride and their oldest daughter Queenie. Laughter filled the air and they were thankful to God Almighty for this family addition. Two months after her birth, Ethel’s mother was called home to be with the Lord. Her father thought that it was best for his parents to assist with the girls rearing and Lige and Maggie Gorings were happy and proud to do so. Her father Robert, grandparents Lige and Maggie, and her sister Queenie all preceded her in death. Growing in the admonition of the Lord, Ethel was converted and baptized in New Jerusalem Baptist Church by Dr. Wilson Fallin, Sr. She was a faithful member. She served for a brief period on the Senior Usher Board but was unable to fulfill her duties due to health reasons. Her grandparents, whom she lovingly called Mom and Dad, insisted that she complete her education. Ethel diligently studied and completed her elementary and high school education in the Bessemer City School System. She graduated from Dunbar High School in the class of 1956. Being such a hard worker, Ethel began working in the retail industry. She was employed by Parisians of Birmingham in the ladies stock room for many years and for twelve years she was employed by Wal-Mart. In 1979 a most distinguished gentleman named Joe Edward Walton returned home from Cincinnati, Ohio in search for his high school sweetheart. As providence would have it, Joe and Ethel fell in love and were married on March 31, 1980. Together they reared her two children Bonita and Tyree. They spared no pains to educate and provide for their children. Sadly, Bonita preceded her in death. Joe insisted that Lil’ Ethel, as she was lovingly called, retire from retail to become a housewife. Because the two of them loved to travel she decided to take the high road and ride along with Joe during his years as a driver for Wal-Mart. For 18 years “Lady Wagon Master” was her handle and she was well loved and respected by the other truckers. She also traveled extensively, taking seven cruises, and many road trips that allowed her to see most of America and its territories. At 11:34 p.m. on Sunday, May 29, 2016, Ethel boarded the Hallelujah Express and traveled to a place of no more: no more sickness, no more pain, no more heartaches, and no more tears. There is nothing but peace and happiness in the father’s house. Rest well. We’ll see you in the morning. Ethel will truly be missed but her memories will be cherished by her loving husband, Joe Edward Walton, son, Tyree D. Scott, Bessemer, Alabama; grandsons Cornelius E. Wray and Gerald D. Lloyd, Birmingham, Alabama; great-grandson, Carson Alexander-Daniel Wray,Birmingham, Alabama brother Nathaniel McBride, Birmingham, Alabama; sister-in-law Dorothy Walton, Houston, Texas, a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives, friends, church family, and an extended family member, Shamira Faye Jackson, whom she loved as a granddaughter.