Telling friends she “had a wonderful life,” Effie Tetreault went home to Holy Lord Jesus at age 98 last Thursday evening.
The middle of 5 children born to A.D. Barton and pianist Mary Mabel Dodge, her mother died on Mother’s Day, 1929, when Effie was 9. Grief-stricken, and with the country in the throws of Depression, her father descended into mental illness, leaving the children effectively orphaned. Born in tiny Kenedy, Effie was rescued and brought to Corpus by her aunt, Evelyn Evans. Effie’s two older brothers kidnapped her younger brother and sister from the Methodist home and the three oldest kids worked multiple jobs to support the younger two. Effie started out in Lichenstein’s department store and later became a bank teller. In the evenings she sang in Corpus’s jumping Big Band scene under the name Jane Barton.
On July 10, 1954 she married Lt.j.g. Paul “Moose” Tetreault, a Navy flyer, in his hometown of Greenfield, Massachusetts. The couple didn’t return to Texas for 50 years. Effie’s prayers for a little boy were answered in 1957 with the birth of her son, Paul Jr. Effie loved being a Navy wife, and the Navy seemed to station the family right in the hotspots of American history: Florida at the start of the space race, Southern California in the Beach Boy years, Northern California during the hippy movement, and Washington, D.C. from the Nixon to George W. years. In 2007 Effie began to worry she would die outside of Texas and the family moved to College Station. As she got off the plane, she nudged Moose and asked, “Did you ever think I would drag you back here?” She is survived by her husband, Captain Paul J. Tetreault and son, Commander Paul J. Tetreault, Jr., an attorney. Effie’s strong faith and prayers led both these men to know Jesus.
A graveside service will be held at Seaside Memorial Park Friday, December 28th at 1:30. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to JewsForJesus.org