There aren’t many people my age to reminisce and tell old tales with

March 6, 2016

“I have Macular Degeneration and I am going blind. I am 2400 in my good eye, but I am managing so far. I got a fine arts major in college in 1943 and painted steadily from 1975. I had to let it go two years ago because I couldn’t see. I miss it a lot. It was a way to fill my time. Naked trees were my favorite thing to paint. They have such wonderful shapes and they are so different. I started taking an sculpture class, but I still have time at home.”

“How do you adjust to losing vision?”
“I don’t think about it. Every once in a while there is something I can’t do and it hits me. I live on my own now. My husband died last year. We were married 68 years. I depend on God and prayer. It has taken me this long to take it one day at a time. I remember agonizing over what ifs. I try not to do that anymore. I like to cook and have company. People are very kind and take me out to eat. I go to church when I can get a ride. That is the bad part, not being able to take yourself where you want to go. I have to schedule trips around other people. There is no need to agonize over it, that just doubles the trouble.”

“We adopted children after 15 years of marriage. We were the first in Mobile County to adopt a second child because originally you could only adopt one child. I worked with the Corps of Engineers making maps during the war. I taught 4th grade for 20 years. It was fun, but I was glad when I retired. The parents made me crazy, not the children. I went to boarding school in Mobile at age 12. I don’t know if I had a wild stage, maybe my whole life has been a wild stage. I was born a bohemian, but I was raised conservative. They have been fighting all of my life.”

“I am an only child. I don’t have many relatives. I am one of the only ones of my age left. There aren’t many people my age to reminisce with and tell old tales with. But it has been a good life. I have been blessed.”


  1. Nancy Raia

    Miss Adele is such a bright spot in our world at the Art Center. You know when she’s come to create for the morning as she cheerily greets everyone on her way to the clay room. “Hi, Miss Adele!” is heard coming out of the offices and other classrooms, and if she can’t see who it is, she stops and turns around asking , “Who’s that?” She makes time to brighten the day of each person she meets. We just love “Adele” day! She lives her faith every single moment. Thanks for sharing her story!

  2. Aimee Hughes

    My wonderful 4th grade teacher! One of her paintings, a wedding gift, has hung in my home for 30 years. I look at the painting and think of her almost every day.

  3. Art Robertson

    An amazing person! I’m so glad I can claim her as my family!

  4. Carol Tanner Barry

    Oh that sweet face! I was in Ms. Stafford’s fourth grade class at Forest Hill Elementary, 1958-59. Honestly, the best teacher of my early years. In fact, it was during the year that I made the decision to teach. I have recently retired from a very successful and fulfilling career of 42 years. Thank you, Mrs. Stafford for being such a positive influence on my career path!

  5. Herman and Marghuerita Roberts

    We love Miss Adele! She and Mr. Tommy have been family friends for over 60 years. We also have a wonderful painting of hers. When we visit, we are always amazed at how young she still looks and how active she remains! Fun to see this article!

  6. Pamela Brady

    “Momma Stafford” as she was so affectionately called during our college years! Her daughter Marianne and I were college roommates back in the 70’s and she always cooked for us and sent treats back to Montevallo!! Mrs. Stafford is the epitome of a Southern Belle, she is gracious, kind and filled with love for all!!

  7. Leah Bond

    Fortunate to be in her neighborhood. She hosted the neighborhood Christmas party and had decorated her lovely home SO beautifully. A consummate hostess!

  8. mike whitney

    It stunned me to find this site and see that Ms. Stafford is still getting around well. It amazed me even more to find that Carol Tanner Barry had posted on here saying she was in Ms. Stafford’s 4th grade class in 1958-59. Well, so was I Carol. Too long ago for me to remember anyone else, but I definitely remember how great Ms. Stafford was.


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