Matrilyn Brown Echols, 68, of Memphis, Tennessee, passed away on November 6, 2022 in Memphis.
Services are being held in Memphis, Tennessee.
Friend is the term that can be used to describe Matrilyn Echols. She genuinely understood the term not superficially but genuinely. To have deep relationships with people for so many years is rare for most of us, but for Matrilyn, it was natural. It was just who she was. She was a friend. She loved people and she valued relationships.
Matrilyn Brown Echols was born August 21, 1954 in Memphis, TN where she was the 4th of 5 siblings. Matrilyn graduated from Hamilton High School in 1972 and attended SWTCC. She worked for Holiday Inn for many years as a reservation agent and then the State of TN. Upon leaving the state of TN, she accepted a job in Washington, DC where she worked for the FBI for several years. After leaving the FBI she returned to Memphis in 1980 for a brief time. In December of 1980 she married Edward Echols. They moved to Pampa, Texas after their marriage and remained in Texas for over 30 years. They became the proud parents of Courtney and Marlon.
After the death of her husband, Edward, she remained in Texas for a few years but returned home to Memphis in 2013. Upon returning to Memphis, she reunited with people and resumed the thing she loved most – being a friend. Not long after returning to Memphis she joined St. Paul Baptist Church where she was a faithful member and servant. She loved Bible Study, working in the homeless ministry, and other ministries of the church. Matrilyn was devoted to her church and the work of the Lord. This was lived out as she served and loved others. Who was her neighbor? You were!
Wherever people were with needs, Matrilyn wanted to be there. While in Pampa, Texas she was a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA), an organization that helped place children in foster care. She volunteered with this organization for several years while in Texas. Prior to her illness, she served as a substitute teacher at Vision Prep Charter School. Not only was she a great friend but she was a great listener. She had the ability to actively engage with people, empathize, and share funny stories. She had a great memory and always remembered people and events from the past. She loved to laugh and she was always singing.
Matrilyn gave so much meaning to the word friendship. These were not superficial friendships but friendships that spanned more than 50 years. Matrilyn had friends from all walks of life. Some older, and some younger. Arzola Harley, Patricia Glover, Betty Stout, Doris Theus, Ellane Coulbertson, Sederia Taylor, Phyllis Weaver, Minnie Logan and Leanna Sykes were some of her lifetime friends and of course her twin sister, Madrilyn and sister, Treneatra. During her time in Texas, some of her dearest friends were Phyllis Briggs, Pearl Morgan, Carol Dinkens, Mozetta Johnson, Betty Tolliver, Debbie Larkin, Debbie Stripling, and Lena Brown.
Friends were definitely special but there was one person who stole her heart - Avery. Like most grandparents, rules were relaxed for grandchildren. Avery was no exception. She was “mimi” to Avery and she simply adored her. Avery’s favorite memories of “mimi” were taking her to her favorite restaurants, taking her to church, and those memorable rides to Vision Prep. Avery will miss her “mimi.” She was also known as “mimi” to Landon, Shane, Aiden, Lia, Elise, Addison, and Jason. They loved her just as much as she loved them.
In addition to all her friends she will be cherished by her daughter Courtney and son Marlon, and her granddaughter, Avery, her two sisters, Treneatra Hollis and Madrilyn Parham, her sister in law- Evelyn Echols and many nieces and nephews. She will be missed also by her special friends Thomas and Gladys Taylor, her church family and her community.
We will miss you Matrilyn. You are home now.