Obituary: Tommye Byrd Has Passed Away, What Happened? Tommye Byrd passed away on April 7, 2022, at the Enterprise Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center where she was a resident. Tommye was born December 4, 1922, in Geneva County, Alabama, at the home of “Granny Broxson” near Bellwood. She was the daughter of Jessie Broxson Byrd and Benjamin Bert Byrd. Her siblings were Jeanette Moates, Benjamin Max Byrd, and Catherine Louise Cresap, all having preceded her in death.
Tommye Byrd loved her home and her hometown of Enterprise where she resided for her full 99 years. She gladly shared the history of Enterprise and the surrounding areas, including Camp Rucker, with anyone who asked. Having lived the history, she was an expert and had a sharp, active mind. Her favorite daily activity was reading local newspapers – Enterprise, Dothan, and Montgomery – and sharing interesting tidbits of information and humor she had gleaned.
She was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Enterprise until her health prevented her from attending. She looked forward to visits by the Homebound Committee, Rev. Edd Brashier, Kathy Chambers, Kay McDaniel Jackson, and others who were faithful to visit and help her on many occasions. She was appreciative to the Love Works group who ministered quarterly to her through changing lightbulbs, fixing door locks, sweeping the porch, raking leaves, and many other tasks that 90+-year-olds are unable to accomplish.
Many Enterprise folks knew Tommye Byrd for her over thirty years of working with the Coffee County Health Department when it was located on Edwards Street. As Tommye never drove, she walked daily to work, home for lunch, and in the afternoons. She signed many birth certificates for those born in Enterprise and death certificates for the deceased in Coffee County. She had an interesting career with many stories about starting programs such as school immunizations and home health services.
After her retirement, she was very active in the volunteer community of Enterprise. She was often at the Enterprise Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center, Enterprise Medical Center, Pea River Historical Society, and First Baptist Church greeting newcomers like old friends. On Mondays, she was at the Enterprise Nursing Home helping residents play Bingo and bringing a smile to many faces.
She was a world traveler visiting almost every state and continent. She loved her bus tours across the United States as well as her worldwide travels. Her last trip out of the United States was to China after the SARS epidemic. At that point, she said she had “seen enough” and let her passport expire. Her family loved to hear about her adventures and the sights she had enjoyed.
Her family of Broxson’s and Byrds were dear to her heart, being on committees for each to plan and implement reunions. Her grandparents were some of the first settlers of the Enterprise Community – Thomas Andrew and Catherine Mullins Byrd whose home was on North Main Street. Her maternal grandparents were William Suggs and Lucrecia Tindol Broxson of the Bellwood Community.
Her nieces and nephew who preceded her in death were Nancy Catherine Cresap Knowles, Emily Catherine Moates Sawyer, and Benjamin Martin Moates. Ben became her “go-to” person when she needed something in her later years of being homebound. It was usually a television issue as she was apt to push any and every button on the remote then declared the TV did not work! He was always patient, attentive, and responsive when she called. The death of her beloved nephew, Ben Moates was very difficult for Aunt Tommye. At that point, she was ready to join her family and friends who were waiting for her in Heaven.
She is survived by nieces and nephews, Rebecca (Becky) Moates Cain (Dennis), David Bert Moates (Joan), Benjamin Max Byrd, Jr. (Cathleen), Amy Byrd Goertz (Duane), Robbie Byrd Daniels (Jeff), Edward Cresap (Michelle) and nephew-in-law, James Sawyer. Her great-nieces and nephews were comforts and a matter of pride over the years as she loved hearing from them and knowing their accomplishments. Her sweet great-great-niece, Aubrenna Van Ness, always brought a smile to her face. She and Brenna enjoyed reading together on Sunday afternoons- Aunt Tommye reading one of the local newspapers and Brenna reading her Highlights magazine that Aunt Tommye faithfully subscribed to throughout the years for all nieces and nephews.
Special thanks to Dr. William Reynolds, Beryl McNee, Bethany Van Ness, Pamela McNair Sikes, and other home caregivers as well as the staff of the Enterprise Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center, Leanne McLeod, Mary Stephen, Dawn Cook, and many others.
Graveside services will be held at 11:00 A.M., Saturday, April 9, 2022, at Enterprise City Cemetery with Rev. Edd Brashier officiating. Memorials may be made to the Enterprise City Cemetery Fund, PO Box 310075, Enterprise, AL 36331, or the Pea River Historical Society, 108 South Main Street, Enterprise, AL 36330 in her memory.
She will be greatly missed by her family and the Enterprise community.