Melba Jo Welch, age 86, of Copperas Cove, passed away on Monday, September 27, 2021. Funeral Services will be at 11:00 AM, Friday, October 1, 2021, at Viss Family Funeral Home, 1614 S. FM 116, Copperas Cove, TX 76522 with burial following at 3:00 PM, at North Santo Cemetery in Santo, Texas. A visitation will be held an hour prior to the service at the funeral home. The service will be live-streamed on Viss Family Funeral Home's Facebook page.
Melba was born on October 15, 1934, in Stephenville, Texas to the late Joe and Ellen Rogers Noonkester. She grew up in Lipan, Texas where she was a tremendous high school basketball player. She holds the 2nd all-time state scoring record by scoring 72 points in one game. Melba later graduated Magna Cum Laude from McMurry College in 1961 while supporting her husband and raising two boys. She married Doyle Wendell Welch, the love of her life, of Santo on June 28, 1951. They spent nearly 60 years together before he passed in 2011. Melba was an elementary educator for nearly 30 years. She received several teacher of the year awards and loved her students. Melba served side by side with her husband, Rev. Dr. Doyle Welch, as he served as a pastor at many churches. She would often lead the singing and teach Sunday School. Melba was a great storyteller and loved to laugh. Melba also was an avid sports fan and never missed any of her boy's or grandchildren’s games. After her retirement, she moved to Copperas Cove and quickly got involved in helping at the Copperas Cove School District mentoring teachers and selling tickets at the football annex. Melba attended the First Baptist Church of Copperas Cove and Pidcoke Baptist Church.
Melba was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Dr. Doyle Welch; grandson, Chad Evan Welch; three brothers, Tommy, Hershel and James Noonkester; and one sister, Donna Holloway.
Melba is survived by her sons, Gary Welch and wife, Faith, Jack Welch and wife, Carol "Suzie", Tracy Welch and wife, Sheri; six grandchildren, Joshua, Steven, Kaylee, Caleb, Matthew Welch, Daniel Martin; great-granddaughter, Madeleine Jo Welch and numerous nieces and nephews.