Mrs. Nila Kathryn McHale of Centreville AL entered the gates of Heaven on March 3rd at the age of 96. She was preceded in death by her parents, Daniel O. Thomas and Eunice Fowler Thomas, her loving husband Thomas E. McHale, brother Elwell O. Thomas and his wife Mary Ellen and grandson Jeff McCary.
Nila was born in Birmingham on November 14th, 1924, at home in Tarrant City, Alabama. She graduated from Woodlawn High School in Birmingham where she met the love of her life, Thomas McHale. They married on July 20th, 1946 at East Lake Methodist Church and moved to Centreville in 1951 to manage the Thomas & Flower poultry business until 1961. That year they opened McHale's Department Store in Centreville which they owned until 1995 when they retired.
As proprietors of McHale's Department Store, Tom and Nila supported the community by donating clothing or other items from their store to many worthy organizations including Talledega Children's Home and Wales Goebel Ministries. In turn, the community supported the McHale's accepting them into the local society and making the store a staple of downtown Centreville for 34 years. Nila took special interest in the development of young women by hosting prayer breakfasts and ladies bible studies in her home. Nila and Tom also hosted a bible study led by Dale Cutlip for high school and college students for over 15 years.
She is survived by a son, Thomas E. McHale, Jr. of the home and a daughter, Gloria McCary Potter(COL(R) Don) of Huntsville. She has the following grandchildren: Danny McHale (Kristi) of Georgia, Ashley McCary of Huntsville, Stephen McCary of Huntsville, and Mary Kathryn Maertens (Sam) of Oman. Great grandchildren include Hayden McCary, Landon McCary, Bailey Carolyn McHale, Daniel Bain McHale, Myna Rose Maertens, Nila Mae Maertens, Anna Joy Maertens, and Cliff Thomas Maertens.
Nila touched every life she came in contact with through her work, church and social activities. She had a wonderful sense of humor and was quick witted. She loved her God, her family and her friends, she was always there for them to help through life's struggles. Saying she will be missed is an understatement, but she will always be remembered with a smile and kindness.
To send flowers to the family, please contact Cahaba Flowers in Centreville at 205-926-4283. In lieu of flowers, please consider giving towards a work overseas that was dear to Nila's heart by going to www.NilaMemorial.com or St. Jude's Children's Hospital. Visitation will be held 12:00-1:00 pm followed by services at Brent Presbyterian Church on March 13, 2021 at 1:00 p.m.
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