Searcy James Ewell Sr.

Photo of Searcy James Ewell Sr.
SEARCY JAMES EWELL SR., 82, departed this life on Friday, Oct. 22, 2010. Even though Searcy was challeneged with blindness at a very early age, this did not prevent him from becoming a very successful and value creating member of society. Searcy, a retired school teacher and band director, was also a professional musician well known in local entertainment circles. Searcy was a member of Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, where he served many years as a member of the deacon board. Early in his career, Searcy was the principal of the segregated Arkansas School for the deaf and Blind on 22nd and Madison. While serving as principal, he occasionally had to stroll through the campus performing the duties of the night watchman. Searcy jokingly stated that he was probably the only totally blind person to have served as night watchman. Searcy was valedictorian of his graduating class at the Missouri School for the Blind. He received his Bachelors in elementary education from Lincoln University and he received his Masters in elementary education from Saint Louis University. When he graduated magna cum lade from Lincoln, he received an award as the student who shows "the most promise for future success," and Lincoln's Dean remarked that his most amazing accomplishment was teaching boxing and swimming courses on his part-time job at the Missouri School for the Blind. Among Searcy's many accomplishments and activities include the following: President of the Arkansas Chapter of the National Federation for the Blind; Board of Directors of the Division of Services for the Blind, board of the Arkansas Radio Reading Service; member of Central Arkansas Transit Board; member of Advisory Council on Transit Services for Persons with Disabilities; appointed to the Silver Hair Legislature by then Governor Bill Clinton; fifty plus year member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, inc.; member of the alumni associations of Lincoln University, Missouri School for the Blind, Arkansas School for the Blind and Madison Street School. Searcy was preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Dorothy June Ewell. He is survived by three sons, McIntosh Ewell (Loretta) of Upper Marlboro, Md., Searcy Ewell Jr. and Wesley Ewell (Tometta) of Little Rock; one daughter, Sherrelyn Diane Rosenberger (Steven) of Saint Lewis, Mo.; one brother, Frank Ewell of Kansas City, Mo.; one sister, Francis Lovett of Alamogordo, N.M.; 14 grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren and a host of cousins, nieces, nephews and relatives. Visitation will be 6-8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 5, 2010 at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, 1400 Ringo Street, Little Rock, Ark. Funeral Services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 6, 2010, also at Mount Pleasant. Arrangements: Brown's Christian Funeral Service P.O. Box 430, Sweet Home, Ark. 72164, 501-244-8000, Melvin Brown, II.

Published October 31, 2010

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