Olivia Weems Renkl, 1931-2012

Olivia Weems Renkl, 80, was a native of Clopton, Alabama; a longtime resident of Homewood, Alabama; and a recent transplant to Nashville, Tennessee. She was born unexpectedly on July 23, 1931, in Bertha, Alabama, in her maternal grandparents’ bed—her mother, Mildred Mims Weems, had been canning fruit and mistook the early labor pains for having eaten too many peaches. The physician who delivered Olivia was her paternal grandfather, Dr. William Moses Weems.

Olivia was a graduate of Auburn University (then Alabama Polytechnic Institute) and its school of home economics. After college she loved her work as a home-demonstration agent with the County Extension Service in several rural communities in lower Alabama, including Andalusia. In 1960 she married William Bishop Renkl, whom she loved until his death in 2003 and every day afterward until she joined him again on June 11, 2012.

She was preceded in death by her grandparents, Bryant and Olivia Brannon Mims and William and Alice Hawley Weems; by her parents, Max and Mildred Weems; and by her brother and sister-in-law, Max and Nina Blalock Weems. She leaves behind three bereft children and their spouses, and her eight grandchildren: Margaret Renkl and Haywood Moxley, and Sam, Henry, and Joe Moxley; Billy Renkl and Susan Bryant, and Emily Hyams, Ian Bryant, and Will Renkl; Lori Renkl and Michael Breeden, and Max and George Breeden; one great-grandchild, Lily Hyams; and the grandchildren of her heart: Sarah Doughton, Mary Ann Doughton Wilson, and John Doughton. Olivia’s home church was the United Methodist  Church of Clopton, Alabama. For more than 40 years she was a member of the Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church in Homewood, Alabama. Most recently she belonged to Christ the King Catholic Church in Nashville, Tennessee.

All services will be held at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church in Homewood, Alabama. Visitation with the family will be Friday, June 15th, at 5 p.m., followed by a rosary service at 6 p.m. The funeral mass will take place on Saturday, June 16th, at 11 a.m.

The family requests that any memorial donations be made to the Clopton United Methodist Church in Dale County, Alabama; to the scholarship fund at Our Lady of Sorrows School in Homewood, Alabama; or to the scholarship fund at Christ the King School in Nashville, Tennessee.


4 responses

  1. I wish I had met Wibby in real life, but she is as vivid in my mind as an old friend, thanks to this website. Love to you, Margaret, and to everyone in Wibby’s family, from a faraway fan and admirer. What a lovely obituary.

  2. Rest in Peace, Olivia, knowing you have left a fine legacy of children and grandchildren to carry on your wit, creativity, intelligence, style, and beauty.
    Thank you for sharing your mother with us, Margaret.

  3. Margaret: Hello to all. I have been having trouble with my computer and unfortunately have lost the Wibby blogs with Olivia talking (quilt, tablecloth, etc.). I know you have much to do but when you have time would you send those to me. I cherish them. I miss her so much.

    Love to all,

  4. “Well…I have to tell you”, Wibby’s favorite quote and how she would start most of her stories. We do miss her here in Homewood and we continue to pray for her in Heaven.May she rest in peace.

    The Hardins (or at least one of them)

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