REMEMBERING MRS. MARCELLE WILDER, DEVOTED WIFE AND GENEROUS COMMUNITY SUPPORTER -- (Extensions of Remarks - June 15, 2004)
HON. JIM COOPER
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
TUESDAY, JUNE 15, 2004
Mr. COOPER. Mr. Speaker, Mr. TANNER and I rise today to celebrate the life of Mrs. John Wilder of Tennessee.
Mrs. Wilder was recognized across the state for her devotion to her husband, Lt. Gov. John Wilder, to her church and to the people of Tennessee. With the passing of Marcelle Ann Morton-Wilder on June 7th, Tennessee lost a passionate and generous spirit whose lifelong commitment to supporting her state, her community and her family inspired so many others.
Marcelle Wilder and John Wilder's partnership was itself an inspiration for all those who knew them. Married for 62 years, Marcelle Wilder met her husband-to-be as a young student in Fayette County. Following his election to the Tennessee Senate in 1958, and then to Lt. Governor in 1971, Marcelle joined her husband in working on behalf of all Tennesseans. She made frequent trips to Nashville to be at her husband's side as he led the Tennessee legislature. At the same time, she gave generously of her time and energy to many community organizations. She was a co-founder of the Tennessee Waltz Organization, a fund-raiser for the Tennessee State Museum. She served on the Southern Legislative Conference Ladies Committee and the National Conference Ladies Committee for many years. In addition, she was a visible and energetic member of the Tennessee Bicentennial Committee in 1996. She also was an active member of her church, the Braden United Methodist Church, and was recognized for her work in researching and writing the history of the church.
On behalf of all Tennesseans, I offer my deep condolences to Lt. Gov. Wilder, their two sons, four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Their loss is one that all Tennesseans share as we pause to remember the many gifts Mrs. Wilder shared with all of us during her lifetime.