Lila Steele Dreyfus

August 31, 1945March 11, 2023
Obituary of Lila Steele Dreyfus
Lila Esther Steele Dreyfus August 31, 1945 – March 11, 2022 Lila was born a gentle soul. She grew up on a farm near Teague, Texas where she was respected and admired by both classmates and teachers for her clever wit, insightful writing, and above all, her compassion and wise counsel. She often talked of becoming a social worker so that she could help the disadvantaged. Lila’s career trajectory, after she graduated from Baylor University with a BA , took many paths. She began as a social worker with Texas Child Welfare, responsible for protecting children from abusive homes. She earned a masters degree in social work from the University of Texas at Arlington. Lila took a break from “people work,” returned to UTA, earned a masters degree in accounting and a CPA license, and then worked as an accountant. Later she went to schools in Guatamala and El Salvador to learn Spanish. She traveled Mexico and Central America often on her own. Lila’s big heart was reflected not only in her careers, but in her long friendships and devotion to family, remembering birthdays, holidays and school events. Lila was a quiet, ever-sociable presence wherever she went, not because she talked about herself but because she listened and brought out the stories of others. She was the person who entered a room and before the evening was over, she was hosting yet another story-telling session. Lila died and peacefully and very suddenly at home on March 11 after a lengthy battle with Alzheimers, which she openly acknowledged and managed with her usual humor, and with attentive care provided by Charles Dreyfus, her loving and much-loved husband of 46 years. Lila is also survived by her brother and sister-in-law Frank and Karen Steele of Teague, sister-in-law Susan Dreyfus Sawyer, and by two generations of nieces and nephews including Wyatt Steele of Chicago, Emily Steele of Waco, Audry Steele of Austin, John P. Sawyer III of Boston MA, and Dr. Sydney Sawyer of Novato California. She was preceded in death by her parents Clifford and Jewel Steele of Mexia, Texas. Special thanks to Dr. Jennifer Heath Korpal and to Dr. Teresa Godbey. Donations may be made to your favorite causes. Friends are cordially invited to join us to celebrate Lila’s life at 2:00, Sunday, March 19 at Blue Mesa Grill ( second floor ) 612 Carroll Street, Fort Worth.

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