|Birth: ||Jan. 27, 1892|
|Death: ||May 4, 1976|
Viola Mae Bryant preferred her middle name and was called Miss May by most people. She was the daughter of Rutha Belle (Brockman) and John Austin Bryant. She was the third of 13 children, one of whom the name is unknown. Her sisters were Pearl Ion, Ida Ella, Rosa Lee, Vona Nell and Tressie Dortha. Her brothers were Iva, Virgil, Welby, Ocil, Lucian and Ola.
On May 8, 1925, she became the second wife of Joe C. Bryant, who already had eight children from a previous marriage. Mae's first child was my mother, Mary Walker Bryant. She had three more girls - twins who died at 5 months of age and my Aunt Pauline.
To me, Mae was always my Mama (pronounced Ma Ma). It was a name my brother had called her and it was the only thing I understood for the longest time as Granny was what my parents called their own grandmothers.
I didn't realize it at the time, but my grandmother helped me to become an excellent speller. The only homework she could really help me with was spelling, so I studied it to the extreme. If I didn't get 100% on my spelling test, I was embarrassed.
When I was in my sophomore year of college, my grandmother and my Aunt Nona (Mae's stepdaughter) helped me go to London for a three month trip. Of course, I worked, too. But while I was gone, my Mama died. I know all of her grandchildren missed her, but I still need to tell her about my trip. Thanks, Mama!
Her obituary from the May 13, 1976 Central Kentucky News (Campbellsville, Kentucky):
Mrs. May Bryant, 84, of Sano Route, Columbia, passed away Tuesday, May 4, at 5 a.m. at St. Francis Hospital, Beech Grove, Indiana, after several weeks' illness. She was the daughter of the late Austin and Rutha Brockman Bryant of Adair County. A member of the Free Union Separate Baptist Church, she was the widow of the late Joe Bryant who preceded her in death April 24, 1960. Mrs. Bryant is survived by two daughters, Mrs. Mary Sullivan of Danville, Indiana, Mrs. Pauline DeLoach of Morgantown, Indiana; three step-children, Arthur Bryant of Greenfield, Indiana, Owen Bryant of California, Mrs. Nona Stackhouse of Miramar, Florida; five brothers, Virgil Bryant of Michigan, Ocil Bryant of Columbia, Ola Bryant of Sano Route, Columbia, Iva Bryant of Illinois, and Lucian Bryant of Edinburgh, Indiana; also 6 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren; two sisters, Mrs. Rose Scales of Mahomet, Illinois, and Mrs. Dorothy Whitt of Cincinnati, Ohio. Funeral service was conducted Thursday, May 6, at 2 p.m. at Free Union Separate Church by Rev A. G. Smith. Interment was in the Free Union Church Cemetery. Stotts-Phelps-McQueary Funeral Home was in charge of funeral arrangements. Pallbearers: Vester Kerr, Millard Kinnett, Joe Conover, Oscar Shaw, Walter Hadley, and Vertus McGaha.
There were a few typos in her obituary which are corrected here except for the spelling of her middle name which was spelled both May and Mae. She often signed her name May Bryant, but her stone is recorded as Mae.
On Mom's birth certificate, her name is recorded as Mae. For the twins (whose first names were recorded incorrectly as Orpha and Ruth) her name is recorded as Viola. On Aunt Pauline's birth certificate her name is recorded as May. The preferred spelling should be May as that is how she signed her name and how she sent and received letters.
I'd like to thank my cousin, indcub, who originally posted this memorial. He did an awesome job photographing so many tombstones in Adair County, Kentucky. It was from him that I learned about findagrave. Thanks!
John Austin Bryant (1870 - 1947)
Rutha Belle Brockman Bryant (1871 - 1963)
Joe Cephus Bryant (1877 - 1960)*
Mary Walker Bryant Sullivan (1926 - 2006)*
Helen Bryant (1927 - 1928)*
Hazel Bryant (1927 - 1928)*
Pauline Bryant DeLoach (1928 - 2013)*
Pearl Ion Bryant Hill (1890 - 1957)*
Viola Mae Bryant Bryant (1892 - 1976)
Ida Ella Bryant Deener (1894 - 1972)*
Iva Bryant (1896 - 1980)*
Rosa Lee Bryant Scales (1898 - 1980)*
Virgil Bryant (1900 - 1983)*
Ocil Bryant (1904 - 1993)*
Lucian Bryant (1909 - 1991)*
Ola Bryant (1911 - 1991)*
Tressie Dortha Bryant Whitt (1914 - 1986)*
Free Union Cemetery
Maintained by: J.Sullivan
Originally Created by: indcub
Record added: Nov 30, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 8140068