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Glorie Kensel Steele

Glorie Kensel Steele
May 23, 1915 - July 15, 2020

Glorie Kensel Steele passed peacefully from this life on July 15, 2020 at age 105. There will be a graveside service at Crestview Memorial Park, Wichita Falls, at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, July 21, 2020, with Dr. Mark bender and Dr. David Hartman officiating. Masks and social distancing will be observed.

Glorie was born in Houston on May 23, 1915 to parents Anna Stewart Kensel and Robert Leroy Kensel. In 1940, she married Joe G. Steele of Wichita Falls. They were married for 61 years, until Joe’s passing in 2001.

She had a life-long passion for reading, which started when she was about 7 years old and met a special librarian at Kemp Public Library, who encouraged the smart, curious little girl toward challenging reading. As a young adult, Glorie worked as secretary and bookkeeper at First Baptist Church. During WWII, she was secretary to the president of City National Bank, while Joe served in Europe. After the war, their daughter Shirley was born and Glorie joined Joe at First Christian Church. She led Sunday School classes, served occasionally as youth director, and worked in many different leadership positions.

She volunteered with Wichita General Hospital Auxiliary. Glorie’s natural ability to connect with others was particularly valuable in arranging post-surgery conferences between patient families and doctors. She was Auxiliary president in the mid-1970’s and was active for 40 years.

Glorie’s characteristic generous spirit, dazzling smile, quick intelligence, and red hair (in later years turned a brilliant white) always made her the light in any room. She had a special ability to see the perspective of others. Once, she hastily arranged a birthday party for the 6-year-old son of a friend, who was overwhelmed by the recent loss of her husband. The little boy, now grown, has never forgotten it.

Until a few months before her passing, Glorie lived independently in her Presbyterian Manor apartment, went downstairs on her own for meals, and socialized with friends. But her gift for aging extended beyond simple longevity. Her boundless curiosity about the world and constant interest in others set a gold standard for growing old gracefully. She smiled with joy at visits from friends and would immediately ask what was happening in their lives and the lives of their families. Glorie made new friends and kept the old. She was beloved by other Manor residents, families of old friends, First Christian Church elders who visited, and her daughter and extended family.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers Dan and Ray Kensel, and her husband Joe Steele. She is survived by her daughter Shirley Steele of Austin, Texas.

The family would like to express appreciation to her doctors and the staff of Presbyterian Manor, House of Hope., and United Regional Health Care System. Memorial donations may be made to Presbyterian Manor or a charity of your choice.