Vernell Fay Platts Toney was born at the Phillips Hospital, Phillips, TX, March 30,1944. Because her mother was ill, after the birth of her sister, Vicki, in 1948, she went to live with her precious grandmother, Allie Smith, in Gem, Tx, and attended the Blue Ridge one-room school. After her mother recovered her health, the family was reunited in Phillips in 1953.
Vernell was a loyal, active Phillips Blackhawk and band member, playing the saxophone and bassoon until graduation in 1961. After graduation from Frank Phillips Junior College and University of Texas, where she earned a degree in Business Administration, she returned to Borger and was soon smitten with a dashing young W.L.“Tex” Toney, and his Corvette! They married Jan 25, 1969. She worked at Huber in the Sales department for several years, greatly enjoying the customer contacts but decided to retire, pursuing her hobbies and taking care of Tex.
Snow skiing, golfing, bowling, and fast cars—a succession of Corvettes, held Tex and Vernell’s attention, as well as the love of a little Siamese kitty named Wart. They owned several different homes as the years went by, winding up in a lovely home on Skycrest in Buena Vista.
Vernell’s love of people- her family and relatives (an extensive circle of aunts and uncles, first cousins, and their children), her sister, her friends, and her husband, were a priority to her. She never missed a chance to be with those she loved, whether it was playing Scrabble with her aunt, attending reunions of family and school mates, or traveling with or to loved ones. Her relationship with the Lord deepened and so widened her circle of loved ones. She held after-school programs for children so she could share scripture songs, she taught several ESL classes, and her passion for music was spread throughout her circles.
Music permeated her life, and she loved to share it whenever possible. She taught bassoon and flute lessons and played the piano/organ at numerous weddings, funerals, church services of all different denominations. In the early 90s, she held a solo pipe organ concert at St. Andrews Methodist Church. One year, she drove through multiple states, searching for churches with large pipe organs and convincing them to allow her to play.
No description would be complete without reminding us of her love of God’s creation as seen in waterfalls and nature, and travel, starting with a summer long stay in Venezuela in 1964, when her father was transferred there for a year, her taste was whetted to see more of the world. She traveled to Brazil to visit cousins, and then- by herself- took a tour up the Amazon to see the waterfalls and toucans. New Zealand she found beautiful, as well as Ireland as she continued traveling throughout her life. Finally, in 2009, she and her sister, Vicki, toured Spain, Rome, Egypt, Turkey, and Athens in a trip of a lifetime thoroughly enjoying the sights and each other.
Since then and her diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, Tex provided excellent care for her in their home thru a series of caregivers: Debbie Whitfield, Krista Flaharity, Donna O’Brien, Phyllis Hall, the Munn family and Tiffany Collins.
After Tex passed away in 2017, Vernell was moved to Borger Healthcare Center in 2018 where she received loving tender care with the private caregivers, BHC, and Hospice under the direction of her sister, Vicki. Everyone who knew her loved her.
Vernell was preceded in death by her husband, W.L.Toney, “Tex”; parents, Vern and Veta Fay Platts; and many loved aunts and uncles.
She is survived by her sister and husband, Vicki and Steve StClair of Cheyenne, Ok; step daughter, Terri and Daryl McDonald of Cowley, TX; 3 nieces who were like children to her: Erin and Bryan Booher of Roanoke, TX, Jennifer and Allison Acker of OKC, and Angela and Justin Meyers of Jenks, OK; 3 grand nieces/nephews, Calab Acker of Cheyenne, OK, Madelyn and Matthew Meyers of Jenks, OK, along with a host of loving cousins and friends. She will be missed.
Services for Vernell will be at 2:00 p.m., Thursday, January 9, 2020 at St. Andrews United Methodist Church with Pasor Steve Ulrey officiating. Burial will follow at Westlawn Memorial Park under the direction of Minton Chatwell Funeral Directors.
Donations can be directed to the Alzheimer’s Association - West Texas Chapter, 110 Mesa Park Dr., Suite 250, El Paso, TX 79912
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Alzheimers Association - West Texas Chapter
110 Mesa Park Dr. , Suite 250, El Paso TX 79912