I was born March 10, 1930, in Houston, Texas to Louis S. Rhoden and Minnie Ola Tipton Rhoden. I was the second of seven children.
My early years I lived in Houston, New Caney then Cleveland. I graduated high school at Cleveland. I met my life partner, Harold Milton Poling. He was in Cleveland with a construction crew to build the Tennessee gas pipeline west of Cleveland. We were married in 1950. We took our honeymoon in Harold’s home state of West Virginia where I met several family members.
West Virginia was like a fantasyland with all the beautiful snow like nothing I had ever seen before in Texas. Harold and I had four children: Bob, Len, James and Patti. Early in our married life we lived in Houston before moving back to Cleveland in 1958. We have lived in the area since then.
My children all graduated in Cleveland and all got married. Some of the happiest events in my life were when my grandchildren were born. We had twelve grandchildren. Two of them predeceased me. We also had eighteen great-grandchildren. What a blessing. I worked to support myself in high school and after. I worked for Mr. Lindley at his store and at my Aunt Agnes’s diner on S. College in Cleveland. I was as independent as possible. I bought my first car in 1950 when Uncle Quinn Rhoden co-signed for me at the bank. A 1950 Chevy.
After the kids got older and were all in school, I went back to the workforce. I became office manager for Mr. Walker at Walker Ford in the 60’s. I was there during the Mustang craze. Later, I was office manager for Carlos Washburn at his trucking company. We hauled tons of materials to build roads all over East Texas. Harold left his job in Houston, tired of the commute. We started a tax return business developing hundreds of clients. Some became good friends. During off season, we traveled throughout the country.
Whether it was the beautiful mountains in the east or the stark desert of the west, we loved to travel. I had always wanted to go to college, so when the kids were all grown, I did. I loved the challenge of learning. I was an honor student. Throughout my life I was always interested in politics. As a child I had overheard conversations of my Dad and his brothers. I guess my interest started then. I became Republican precinct chairwoman in 1960. Nixon vs. Kennedy. Quite an eye opening experience as some people had very strong views and weren’t shy about expressing them.
Our family was active in church. We attended Southline Baptist Church for 40+ years until we moved to New Caney in the early 2000’s. We moved our business with us. Many people followed us there. Harold died in 2016. I missed him so. But now, we’re back together with family and friends who were waiting for us. My “earth suit” is all used up. Now, I have a new body. Part of the heavenly host. Thank you for sharing your life with me. I love you all. Ellen
Ellen Jeannette Poling, age 92 of New Caney, Texas passed away Wednesday, March 23, 2022.
Visitation will be held from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m., Sunday, March 27, 2022, at Pace Stancil Chapel, Cleveland, Texas with funeral services starting at 2:00 p.m. Interment will follow at Bold Springs Cemetery, Livingston, Texas.