Eunice “Lucille” Brooks passed away peacefully in her sleep early Tuesday morning, November 17, 2020 in Portales, New Mexico at the age of 103. A graveside service will be held at the Portales Cemetery at 2:00pm on Saturday November 21, 2020.
Lucille was born to A. A. Nance and Eunice (Swinney) Nance on January 12, 1917 in Crosbyton, Texas. She was the third child of eight in her family of 3 brothers and 4 sisters.
In her high school years, she relocated from Texas to Melrose, NM where she met her future husband, J.D. Brooks. On November 29, 1934 they were married in Levelland, Texas. They made their home in the Melrose community where he farmed until they purchased ½ section of land near Mesa, New Mexico where they moved to continue farming. This land was southwest of Melrose and is now a part of the Melrose Air Force Bombing Range. They stayed there until 1953 when drought and other issues forced them to move to the Floyd Area. They worked on many farms in the Floyd community until 1962 when they moved into their home west of Portales. Lucille got a job at ENMU and worked there until her retirement in 1982. She was fortunate to live in her home until she was 101 years old.
She was an accomplished seamstress. She made wedding dresses, prom dresses, maypole dresses, and any other garments that needed to be made or altered. She made alterations for College Cleaners until she was 96 years old. Over the years, she made countless quilts for herself, her family and friends. It is easy to say that 100’s of quilts were pieced in her living room and sewing room over the years. Every day she got up with a plan for the day which usually involved sewing, baking pecan pies, cooking fried chicken, working in her garden, knitting, playing the piano or taking care of her family.
She was a long time member of Third and Kilgore Church of Christ.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband in 1996, and her daughter Frances Gent in 1997. Just 5 days prior to Lucille’s death her older sister Anna Bell Swanner, 105, passed away in Texas. She was also preceded in death by 5 other brothers and sisters; Hiram Nance, John Arthur Nance, Mary Rushing, Robert Nance and Betty Massey. There were two sons in law as well; Charles “Chuck” McFarland and David Schneider.
She survived by 6 of her 7 children and their families. Emmit (Betty) Brooks of Las Cruces, NM; Eunice McFarland of Payette, Idaho; Colleen (Jody) Stowe of Clovis, NM; Evelyn Schneider of Lubbock TX; Jake (Cindy) Brooks of Nashville, Tennessee, and Harold (Cyndi) Brooks of Portales. She is also survived by her remaining sibling, Ethel Sanders of San Angelo, TX who will be 100 next year. She is also survived by 21 grandchildren, 41 great-grandchildren, and 22 great-great-grandchildren.
The family would like to thank Lori Ribble for the years she spent with Lucille as her caretaker. They became a good friends and Lori cared for Mrs. Brooks with her utmost respect and attention. After Lori, Grace Fair took care of her for several more years until she went to Heartland in 2018. Grace’s love, care and compassion were some of the reasons Lucille could stay in her home as long as she did. To both of them we express are extreme gratitude and we were blessed to have someone love her as much as her family did.
The family would also like to express their deep appreciation to the Heartland Staff for their loving care and devotion Lucille received during her stay there. Their daily dedication they gave her provided us all with an inner peace knowing she was being tended to with the utmost of care. Under extreme situations this year, they went above and beyond our hopes and prayers for her daily care.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that contributions be sent the NM Christian Children’s Home or NM Baptist Children’s Home in Portales.
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