Deborah McLaurin, 72, passed away peacefully on Sunday, October 22, 2023. She was born Wednesday, December 27, 1950 to Orval and Martha Stever, into a large, professional military family. She was a nurturer and actively involved in caring for her younger brothers. She was also an adventurer and was often a cohort in sibling escapades and explorations. Their upbringing made the children mutually reliant on- and protective of one another.
In 1974, Deborah met and married William Burnice McLaurin. They shared life together for 49 years and raised three children – Cord, Paige and Chad. The pair have seven grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. Deborah is also survived by three brothers and one sister.
As an adult, Deborah chose a career in elementary education, which was a fit for her giftedness to shape and nurture children. She was a consistent encourager and motivator, helping children believe they could succeed always challenging them to work toward their best. She especially loved the students in her special needs classes by inspiring them to strive for goals that gave them significance with a healthy self-image. Deborah also learned American Sign Language, as a mature adult, she served her church family in that capacity for numerous years.
Those same qualities caused Deborah to be involved in activities that inspired and shaped others, including Bible Drill, seasonal church dramas, foreign mission journeys, and Disaster Relief Childcare. Deborah inherited from her mother the ability to see the good and the potential in other people and the gift of making others feel special and loved. Deborah was described as a logical decision maker, which was perhaps best observed in the intentionality she used in developing meaningful relationships.
As a dedicated gardener, she delighted in sharing her harvests with others the same way she loved sharing herself with others. She believed that investing in others is a means of growing citizens for the Kingdom of Heaven. In that sense, her harvest has been bountiful.
A memorial visitation will be held Saturday, October 28, 2023 at 12:00 PM until service time of 1:00 PM at the First Baptist Church of Salem, Missouri. 201 N. MacArthur Salem, MO 65560
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