On January 23, 1936, God blessed Eddie Wells and Ellen Benoit with twin girls, Vada and Rada Wells. Vada grew up in Dayton, Texas, where she graduated salutatorian from Colbert School and continued her involvement with her school throughout her life. In addition to excelling in academics, she was a great basketball athlete.
After her graduation, she married Delmar Lee Coward Sr. On January 23, 1954, at Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church Dayton, Tx. The marriage remained intact for almost 70 years until her home going. God blessed their union with three children.
Vada accepted Christ at an early age after becoming a member of Strong Hope Baptist Church Dayton Tx. As a faithful member, she developed a passion for singing praises to God. After her union to Delmar Lee Coward, she became a member of the Lily of the Valley Baptist Church where she served in numerous capacities: president and vice-president of the Mission Society, church choir, Sunday school teacher, member of the Candlelight drill, Baptist Training Union, Matron for the children’s ministry and assisted in other positions.
She sang and traveled with multiple gospel groups. Throughout her lifetime, she participated in a host of choirs and musical groups including her immediate family. Her “Legacy of faith” through praising and studying the WORD was passed on to her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and influenced many others in the faith. She thoroughly enjoyed her son preaching the Word of God, even finishing his sentences when quoting scriptures.
Vada particularly treasured the company of her loved ones. She spent time teaching them the love of Jesus, along with traveling across the United States to Christian conferences and events. Her travels also included special family members from both sides of the family. Each Christmas, from children to great-grandchildren as well as friends, created and delivered treats to neighbors, church members, and the elderly. Her doors, as well as her pots, were always open to friends and family. Vada created a loving environment in her home for young people of all ages to enjoy a nurturing family setting. A sense of belonging when entering the Coward home was demonstrated throughout her lifetime.
Her commitment to community involvement was unwavering. She was well known and pillar in the community. As a result, she received various accolades and honors from numerous organizations, including but not limited to Spirit of Sharing, the MLK Community Service Excellence Award, and Christian Marriage Mentorship.
She was an amazing accountant making sure her family travel, providing vacations each summer on a single salary. We later discovered she had been an annual donor to various charitable organizations, including Feed the Children, sponsoring orphans in other countries, Law enforcement, Alzheimer’s Association, Special Olympics, Veterans organizations, and St Jude’s Children’s hospital, to name a few. Her steadfast faith in God and genuine love for people set her apart.
On February 17, 2021, Vada was ushered into the presence of God by angels. She is proceeded in her homegoing by her parents; Eddie Wells & Ellen Benoit, Brothers; (Joseph Benoit, Roy Willis, John Henry Stewart, & Banks Wells) Sisters; (Rada Shoulders, Sadie Slaughter, Dorothy Carrington, Goldie Wells). Her “Legacy of Faith” is carried on by her Sisters; (Florida Parker, Lois Murphy, Shelia Johnson), Daughters; (Katherine Sprott, Lisa Coward, and Adrianna Artis; Son; Pastor Delmar Lee Jr. (Charlotte Coward), Grandchildren; (Renada Coward, Francisca Curtis, Brian Curtis, Madison Coward, Kayson Beamon, Kaylee Beamon, Marley Artis, Matthew Artis, Kodie DeRouen, Aamri Emerson) Great-grandchildren; (Payton January, Vana Thompson and Phoebe January), Godchildren; (Thomas (Wesley) Payne, Debra Payne, Wayne Cook and Wendell Hubert Jr.)
She also leaves behind a host of dear relatives and special friends, including her Encounter, Vision Ministry International, Lily of the Valley, and Cornerstone Church families, and Spirit of Sharing family.