Lillie Mae McCleskey Sullivan

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April 28, 1931 – October 22, 2018

A former Fisher County resident, Lillie Mae McCleskey Sullivan, passed away October 22, in Lubbock. A memorial service was held in Lubbock at the Broadway Church of Christ. A private family service will be held at a later date at the Dowell Cemetery in Fisher County. Lillie was born April 28, 1931, in Fisher County, the youngest of six children of George and Bessie Yantis McCleskey. Her parents farmed near Rotan, and Lillie and her older siblings attended the Dowell School. After the country school burned, Lillie finished her remaining two years at Rotan High School, where she graduated in 1948. She was a 1952 graduate of Abilene Christian College, majoring in Spanish. In 1985, Lillie earned her MA in Spanish from Texas Tech University. She stayed home with her five children before resuming her teaching career in 1984. She taught Spanish and English at Ira before retiring at the age of 69. The Snyder years from 1952-1985 were filled with raising five children. Lillie served on the Scurry County Library Board and was also elected to two terms on the Snyder ISD Board of Trustees, serving from 1979-1985. Nurturing family ties was a vitally important part of Lillie’s life. Her older sisters Eula and Roberta left Texas during WWII after marrying servicemen, both eventually relocating to Washington state. Her brothers, Preston and Clifton, both served during WWII. Letters and visits from all of them were a treasure to Lillie, the youngest still at home with their widowed mother Bessie. Lillie made sure her five children had the chance to travel to visit their aunts and uncles, spending time with them and their first cousins. Lillie was preceded in death by her parents, her sisters Frances McCleskey, Eula Bustetter, and Roberta Clark and brother Preston McCleskey. She is survived by brother Dr. Clifton McCleskey and wife Jo of Charlottesville, Virginia; sons Scotty Sullivan and wife Mary of Abilene and Shane Sullivan of Lubbock (who lived with Mother the past two years and provided wonderful care); daughters Sue Jane Sullivan of Gail, Dr. Sara Dodd and husband Dr. Tim Dodd of Lubbock, and Sabrina Blankenship and husband Kelly of Buffalo Lake. She had nine grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren. Memorial donations can be made to the George and Bessie Yantis McCleskey Memorial Scholarship, c/o Community Foundation of West Texas, 6102 82nd Street 8B, Lubbock, TX 79424 or go online to “current scholarships” at Each year, the scholarship is presented to a graduating senior from Rotan High School.

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