Adell Rowell Tingle Remembered by Bobbie Ann Hutchins
We are very sad to report that our beloved "Auntie A," Adell Rowell Tingle, went to the great Louisiana Iris Fields in the sky on May 16, 2012, at the age of 91. She was born in Jamestown, La. on February 1, 1921. She was about the middle of a brood of 12 children who grew up on a self-sufficient cotton farm that was worked by all those kids! She married James Junior Tingle when they were both 16, and they brought in their own cotton crop that year with the help of a borrowed mule. The next year, they brought in the crop with their firstborn, Jeanette, in a laundry basket at the end of the cotton rows, guarded by "Teddy Bear," the terrier mutt.
Auntie A was a flower lover from her earliest years. She researched and compiled a number of scrapbooks with Louisiana wild flowers and especially loved her "Native Irises." She made numerous forays with friends in search of vanishing wild flowers, and saved them in her yard. She was careful never to take all of them, but leave some to grow. She was friends with, and greatly admired Caroline Dorman of Briarwood, and Sidney Conger of Arcadia, and grew many of their flowers.
She wrote the first "blog!" It was titled "Down Home Ringgold" and was published by the Bienville Democrat for years. Once, the paper cancelled her column, but there were so many letters of protest and cancellations of subscriptions, that they reinstated it immediately! Everyone felt they knew her because of the column, and we never went anywhere that she did not meet her adoring fans, who knew of her every activity from her blog! She was a celebrity, and she loved it!
She made the trip to Garland, Texas when we moved Lone Star Nursery to Shreveport, in the middle of August, and insisted on helping dig the irises herself, so I had to sit in the shade and make labels for them! She went back with us in October to dig irises from Marie Caillet's pond. Of course, they were immediately soul mates! She attended many SLI conventions, culminating in the 2007 convention, when her namesake, 'Adell Tingle,' won Best of Show. When talking about this later, she had tears in her eyes, and said it was the best day of her life! She was a favorite of everyone in the society and was made a "pet" by every organization to which she belonged.
In spite of a very difficult life, she kept her optimism, her enthusiasm, and her love of knowledge, especially, of her beloved flowers. She forgave everyone their transgressions, and remained positive and hopeful until her last days. We could all learn from her.
We will miss her. She is irreplaceable. We will never forget her. We take comfort in knowing she has gone to a better place, and we hope her streets will not be paved with gold, but with compost, and that thistles (which she hated) will not grow there, but every Louisiana iris ever pollinated, will grow in abundance. She will be there with her little hoe for an eternity of beautiful flowers. Goodbye AuntieA. -Bobbie Ann Hutchins, Niece and Friend