Miss Mary Ellen Roberts Patton will be inducted into the GCHS Hall of Fame during the home game against Coffee County at Ricky Richards Gym on November 19.
Miss Mary Ellen entered GCHS in the fall of 1941 and played on the varsity basketball team for four years. During high school her team had a perfect season her sophomore year, when she averaged 15 points per game. Her junior year, the team had an undefeated regular season only to lose one game to the Manchester team in the tournament at the end of the year. Miss Mary Ellen was the high point scorer for three years and made the All-Tournament Team at McMinnville. Her high school basketball coach all four years was John A. Anderson.
Miss Mary Ellen graduated in 1945, and went to college at Middle Tennessee State College in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where she also played for the Lady Raiderettes. She was the first girl from GCHS to ever play for a college team!
She returned to Pelham as a teacher at the beginning of the 1949-50 school year and started in a two-room school with a class combining grades 1-4. She taught every grade through eighth and served as Principal for fourteen years. Miss Mary Ellen retired from teaching after 45 years making her have the longest years of service in the Grundy County School system. She has touched many, many lives during and after her teaching career.
Miss Mary Ellen Roberts was married to Tom Patton for 64 years. They made their home in Pelham where they raised three children, Dianne Patton Martin, who taught cosmetology at GCHS, Peggy Sue Patton Hartline, who taught school in Georgia and Tennessee, and Eddie Patton who works at AERO. All three of her children were athletes at GCHS: Dianne and Peggy Sue played basketball and Eddie played football and baseball. Miss Mary Ellen resides in Pelham and her three children, six grandchildren, four great-grandchildren, and many, many friends and family live close by.
Her philosophy for life includes giving pieces of advice such as “Live for today; Dream for tomorrow; Learn from yesterday; and Keep your health ‘til you die;” Always follow the Golden Rule; and if you happen to run into her still today, don’t be surprised if her parting word to you is, “Behave.”
Thank you “Miss Mary Ellen” for your contribution to Grundy County!