Melverine Lavonne Barkwell was born July 6, 1931 to the parentage of Curlee Smith Sr. and Mollie Brown Smith. She received the majority of her education at the Mt. Moriah School, then went on to finish the last two years at J.J. Rhoads High. She graduated as Valedictorian in 1949. Melverine continued her education at Prairie View A&M until her parents could no longer afford to pay the tuition.
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Melverine later met and married Winford Barkwell, moved to Sulphur Springs, TX and began a family. She lived there until her health began to fail her and she could no longer care for herself independently. She has always had a love for family and above all Christ. Melverine worked for Sulphur Springs ISD doing custodial work until she retired.
She leaves to cherish her memory a son, Charles Barkwell of Long Beach, CA; sister, Annette Smith James of Daingerfield, TX; brother Jimmie Smith (Patricia) of Fort Worth, TX; special friend Amye Smith of Sulphur Springs, TX; and a host of family and friends.