The McAlister family were farmers, moving from Rutledge, Missouri, to Illinois, then to Colorado before settling in Cabool where Genola entered her freshman year at Cabool High School, graduating with the Class of 1948.
She met her husband James at a party at the McClenahan home on Hungry Creek south of Cabool, while he was home from Wichita, Kansas, visiting his family. They were married on May 29, 1948 at the Methodist church in Cabool. They were blessed with three children: Terry Lee, James Ray and Patricia Ann. In the early 1950s the family moved to Wichita, Kansas, to live and work before returning to Cabool eleven years later.
James and Genola were both members of Providence Freewill Baptist Church in Cabool. Genola later attended Cornerstone Freewill Baptist Church in Mountain Grove, Missouri. She enjoyed bowling when she was younger and was an avid reader. She and her sisters, Julia Ann and Thelma, loved to sing, harmonizing their voices. Genola was a strong woman, retiring from Brown Shoe Company when she was needed to care for her husband James at home until his death in 2002. The last eight years of her life she lived at Landmark Villa Assisted Living in Cabool and was loved by everyone that had a chance to know her.
Genola was preceded in death by her parents; her loving husband, James; her sister, Thelma Sinks; a grandson, Nathaniel McClenahan; and by Chrisy Beavers, whom she loved as a grandchild.
She is survived by her children, Terry McClenahan and wife Sandy of Cox’s Creek, Kentucky, Jimi McClenahan and wife Pam of Cabool, and Pat McClenahan of Houston, Missouri; her grandchildren, Joshua McClenahan currently living in Sweden, Tara Jackson and husband Ernie of Springfield, Kentucky, and Justin McClenahan and wife Shasta of Silver Spring, Maryland; and her great-grandchildren, Ella Grace and Arleigh Jackson and Peyton and Owen McClenahan; her sister, Julia Ann Stillwell of Mountain Grove, Missouri; many beloved nieces and nephews and a host of other relatives and friends, all of whom will miss her dearly.
Services were held at 10:00 a.m. Saturday, November 5, 2016, at the funeral chapel with Rev. Ronnie Turner officiating. Pallbearers were Jerry Stillwell, Clay McClenahan, Derek Sinks, Layne Sinks, Tim Marsolf and Burton Brill. Interment was in Providence Cemetery under the direction of Elliott-Gentry-Carder Funeral Home of Cabool. Online condolences may be made at www.egcfuneralhome.com.