Jones County education pioneer celebrates 90th birthday

Family, friends, and former co-workers came together Sunday for a joyous occasion – the celebration of the 90th birthday of one of the pioneers of education in Jones County who also happens to be the matriarch of a family of educators.

According to the calendar, Myrle Walea Mathews turned 90 April 30, but looking at the strong, vibrant woman at the April 29 party, it appeared the math had to be incorrect.

Mathews served as the principal of Griswoldville Elementary School before becoming the curriculum director for the Jones County School System.

Her husband, William Mathews Sr., was the principal of Jones County High School, daughter Sylvia Rivers is a retired elementary and gifted teacher, and her son, William Mathews Jr., served as superintendent of the Jones County School System for a total of 13 years.

She retired in 1988, the same year she was honored at the Educator of the Year by the Georgia Association of Educational Leadership.

Cecil Ethridge spoke at the reception and said the honoree was his teacher in 1962. He said, when President John Kennedy was assassinated, she let her students listen to the news on radio in her car.


The Jones County News

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