In 1947 she met S. A. Mandeville, known as Pete, at a singing school being held in Freestone. She becked him into the cloak room (her own words) and asked him to come to her house for a glass of tea. They were married January 25, 1947 and had two daughters, Brenda Kay and Molly Gwen.
Their early life took them to Lufkin and Odessa, Texas and then back to Freestone County where they owned Mandeville Grocery in Donie for about 10 years. Their last home was in Teague.
Another pastime was writing poetry. She wrote simple poems when she was very young and continued to write them throughout her life. She passed this trait down to both daughters. She also loved to read and work crossword puzzles.
Ernestine was a Christian, a member of the Church of Christ, and she spent many hours with her Bible in hand. She passed from this life after a lengthy trial with dementia on June 3, 2011.
She is survived by her daughters and their husbands, Brenda and Jerry Ballew of Teague and Molly and Sid Fryer of Fairfield, and her grandchildren: Troy Allison and Anne, Ryker and Denham Hunt; Hayley Allison and her daughter Cicilia King; Clinton Sneed Fryer, his wife, Kristan, and their sons Caden Sneed and Cullen Samuel; and Clark Sidney Fryer; step-grandchildren Stephanie Biggs, her husband Clint, and sons Josh, Devin, and Sam; Ashley Ballew and her son Benjamin Ullman; Tim Ballew and wife Elizabeth. Also surviving is her sister, Joan Lackey, her aunt Addie May Cullwell, and several first cousins.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Pete Mandeville, and her parents.
A memorial fellowship for friends and family will be held Friday, June 9, 2011 at 7 p.m. at the Fellowship Building of First United Methodist Church in Teague. Please join the family for refreshments and sharing memories.
The following is a poem written by my Mother:
. I HAVE A SINFUL NATURE
I have a sinful nature; I do not know from where it came.
But I’ve struggled with it always with many losses, some small gains.
Many days I’ve walked in darkness with a fearful worried mind,
When I asked the Lord to help me learn to live one day at a time.
The time I spent in anguish was because my faith was weak.
I learned to lean upon the Lord for the peace I had to seek.
Many days I struggled onward; long and hard has been the fight.
But I asked the Lord to guide me, help my feet to find the light.
When I stand before the judgment and the Lord looks down on me,
I only hope, in love and mercy, this is what His words will be.
“I have heard you cry for help in the darkness of despair.
I have given help and solace to let you know I care.
I have watched your feeble struggles and have known your heart was right.
And in my mercy grant you pardon as you stand here in the light.
Although you are not worthy, My grace has made you right.
For you’ve had a sinful nature, and did not give up the fight.”
---Ernestine Lamberth Mandeville