The Rev. Evelyn Marie (Groves) Cummings Thornburg, 89, passed away on Monday, March 1, 2021, at Pierpont Center on Fairmont Campus. She was born June 3, 1931, in Cranesville, the daughter of the late Oscar F. and Mary (Liston) Groves.
Evelyn was a 1950 graduate of Kingwood High School. In 1956, Evelyn graduated from God’s Bible School in Cincinnati with a bachelor’s degree in theology. She continued in the field of Evangelism and was ordained and licensed at the age of 33. Evelyn was married on Dec. 19,1964, to the Rev. Samuel O. Cummings. She and her husband, Samuel, were responsible for starting the Meadowdale Wesleyan church in Fairmont on May 27, 1979. Evelyn pastored there until her husband’s illness and death on Nov. 27, 1979.
Evelyn met and married Omar W. Thornburg on Aug. 24, 1984. Evelyn and her husband, Omar, were involved in ministries at the Marion County Jail and many nursing homes in the area. In February 1992, they became members of the Merrifield Memorial Allegheny Wesleyan Methodist Church in Fairmont. She served as a licensed ordained elder of the Allegheny Wesleyan Methodist connection, originally the Alleghany Conference, organist, assistant pianist or wherever she was needed. They enjoyed attending revivals and camp meetings, and selling fruit at the farmer’s market until her husband’s death on July 7, 2000.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her two brothers, Standly R. Groves and Paul E. Groves; and her two sisters, Virginia P. Troop and Betty Mast. Evelyn is survived by her sister, Martha D. Fulkerson, of Kernersville, N.C.; and her brother, Willis Groves and his wife Evelyn, of Albright; her sister-in-law, Shirley Groves, of Brooksville, Fla.; and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family would like to thank Pierpont Center and the staff for the care and compassion they showed for Evelyn over the years. Family and friends are welcome to call at Carpenter and Ford Funeral Home, 209 Merchant St., Fairmont, from 4-8 p.m. Wednesday, March 3, and from noon Thursday, March 4, until the service at 1 p.m. at the funeral home, with Pastor Ron Yoder and Pastor Daniel Cope officiating.
Interment will follow at Beverly Hills Memorial Gardens. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Merrifield Memorial Allegheny Wesleyan Methodist Church, 1265 Bell Run Road, Fairmont, WV 26554.