1960 – 2019
Garland Joe Powell, 59, of Marthaville passed away Dec. 19, 2019. He was born to Bill and Betty Mae Jenkins Powell March 8, 1960, in Zwolle.
Strength is measured, so often in this life, by the visible and external, yet there abides a strength that is deep and unseen, the strength of character. It shines through simple deeds, is felt by those in its vicinity, and is unshakeable in its virtue, and behind his soft smile and kind words, Garland possessed it. He lived by it. He loved by it. The inheritor of many exceptional qualities, his father passed on a devoted nature that taught him to selflessly give and fight for those he loved, and from his mother, a sweet, kind nature that selflessly put others and their happiness first.
At the time of his birth, as Bill walked in to see his new baby boy, he was surprised at his new son’s diminutive stature, happily remarking to Betty that she gave him a “midget.” Little did they know at the time but contained within that tiny body was a titanic heart that for the rest of Garland’s life would emanate an unconditional and consummate love. The center of his life was his family; they came first, and each of them knew it. Alongside his daddy and brothers, he worked hard for the family logging business, Powell Sawmill Inc., in whatever capacity he was needed. As Betty’s baby, he faithfully ensured that he made his momma happy in whatever way he could, and from her acquired an innate passion for fishing.
One day, by the covert arrangement of his sister, Lawanna, and a family friend he drove after work to meet a young lady, Anita. As she walked out to the yard, prodded by her friend, he softly introduced himself, saying “My name is Garland, but everyone calls me Midget, but some people call me Cat.” From that moment, they were completely in love, and to Anita, his name became “Baby.” They could hardly spend a minute apart and married May 23, 1987. Garland became a hopeless romantic, always wanting Anita to feel his intimate care for her. Often supported by a team of “assistants” he consulted with them on every special occasion to help him “knock her socks off.” Their love blessed them with a daughter, Amanda, and Midget fell in love a second time. They spent countless hours together, especially where he was most happy, fishing. And when she married, and he became a “Papaw” he spent every moment he could spare with his two grandchildren.
The food he loved reflected his simple tastes: first, his favorite was a Chocolate Pie, made by Anita or by Dana, his sister-in-law; a strong second choice was his momma’s Banana Pudding recipe, made by her or Laura Mae, his baby sister; and always, homemade biscuits and Lima Beans, only the little ones, especially if they were made my his older sister, Loretta.
The fight of his life came when he was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma. For six years, he lost his energy and endured much pain, but not for a moment did he lose his faith in the Lord and unselfishly endeavored to put his family’s needs above his own to the very end. Whatever name you knew him by, “Midget” or “Cat” fought like a giant for whom he loved and what he believed in. Never parting without a reminding “I love you” to his family, Garland’s life, his example, and his memory will forever echo those words in the hearts of his loved ones.
Left to honor his memory are his soulmate and wife of 32 years, Anita Welch Powell; daughter, Amanda Powell and husband Josh Clark of Marthaville; brothers, Marvin Powell and wife Teresa of Belmont, Alton Powell and wife Susan of Marthaville and youngest brother and constant companion in many endeavors, Stacy Powell and wife Dana of Marthaville; sisters, Loretta Greifzu of Robeline, Lawanna Singletary and husband Jason of Marthaville and Laura Strahan and husband Steven of Marthaville; grandchildren, Bella Ryann Clark and Jesse Raylan Clark; sisters-in-law, Patsy Powell and Yvonne Rawls Powell; lifelong best friend, Gary “Boo Boo” Broadway; and host of nieces and nephews, extended family and friends.
Preceding Garland in death are his dear parents and brothers, Nolan Powell Sr. and Dana Dean Powell.
Serving as pall bearers are Nolan Powell Jr., Wesley Powell, Gary Broadway, Ricky Broadway, Michael Mitchell, Bill Powell, Cody Griefzu and Colton Singletary.
A graveside service honoring his life was Monday, Dec. 23 at 10 a.m. at Cedar Grove Cemetery, 4524 Cedar Grove Road, Robeline with Bro. Glynn Howard officiating.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, a special cause to Garland.