Eula Belle Ellison Stockard, a longtime physical education teacher at Nannie Berry Elementary School in Hendersonville, died on Thursday, August 19, at age 86.
The daughter of Elsie Carrie Harder Boyd and Albert Ellison Sr., she was born July 6, 1935 on Cedar Creek near Linden in Perry County.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Richard Langford Stockard; brother, Eddie Ellison; and sister, Nancy Barrett.
Survivors are daughters, Emily Stockard (John Leeds) and Carrie Stockard, and son, Sam Stockard (Diane); sister, Ollie Mae Moore; brother, Albert Ellison Jr.; and her grandchildren, Andrea and Sam Stockard, Will and Charlotte Cloyd, and Atticus Leeds. Also surviving are brother, James Ellison, and two sisters, Linda Barber and Ruby Himes.
A standout basketball player at Linden High School, Eula earned a bachelor’s degree at George Peabody Teachers College, where she met Richard. They married on Aug. 18, 1957 and moved to California where Emily and Carrie were born before they decided to move back to Tennessee where son Sam was born.
Eula taught at Nannie Berry from 1970 until her retirement in 1995 where she started the Presidential Physical Fitness Program, the Nannie Berry Yardage Club, and Hershey Track and Field program. She affected the lives of thousands of students, encouraging them to excel at their favorite sports and physical fitness activities.
She was often referred to as the “Bicycle Lady,” and many people still recall seeing her riding her bike to school, which she did nearly every day for more than 15 years.
She was a member of First United Methodist Church in Hendersonville, where she was a member of the Women’s Society, and for several years she and Richard attended West End United Methodist Church in Nashville.
In retirement, Eula continued a life of physical fitness, in addition to traveling, tending to flower gardens, reading to children at Nannie Berry, and playing with her grandchildren and neighborhood children.
Graveside services are to be held at 2:00 on Monday, August 23, at the Harder Cemetery on Cedar Creek in Perry County. Austin & Bell Funeral Home is handling local arrangements.
Her family will have a visitation for Eula on Tuesday, August 24, from 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm in the Nannie Berry Elementary School gym.
You may offer your condolences online at www.austinandbell.com
Services have been entrusted to Austin & Bell Funeral Home and Cremation Service, Hendersonville. 615-822-4442.