Fayallena H. Steele
is honored with a Brick from Drew S. Parham.
My mother was born Fayallena Hutchinson on October 22, 1911, in Wichita, Kansas to Lena and Allen Hutchinson. Her brothers Ed and Bill completed the family. She was raised in Wichita schools and St. James Episcopal Church. She married Thomas A. Steele, Jr. in 1943, First she loved him and then she loved me.
Mother loved Wichita, Wichita University, and learning. At Wichita University, she treasured classes in Greek, the classics, music appreciation with Walter Duerksen, and being a member of Alpha Tau Sigma. The problems of the times didn't allow her to finish college, but she was determined that I would graduate. She sacrificed enormously so that I could obtain my degree. At an early age, she instilled in me my love of books and learning by reading to me every day. I went on and received my Master's degree and no one was prouder than my mother.
Her goal for me was to be independent in my thinking and in my actions. She accomplished that goal and now I teach others in similar ways. Her influence has spread far beyond what she imagined.
Mother has always been a second mother to several of my closest friends. She was the greatest listener ever and all of my girlfriends loved to talk to her. She was always there to encourage us as we grew and formed our values.
Mother's love has only been matched by her laughter. She has enjoyed life and made the best of life's misadventures. She has taught me how to handle both the good times and the bad with grace and dignity. She has been my greatest support and the strongest influence in my life. I am extremely grateful for all of the values she has instilled in me. I am thrilled for her name and story to part of this special plaza at Wichita State University. I love and respect her and am so delighted to be able to honor her in the Plaza of Heroines.
Submitted by her loving daughter, Drew Hutchinson Steele Parham
July 28, 1998