TUSCALOOSA Debra Ann Hamler Peoples, age 58, died April 13, 2011, in Birmingham. Services will be 1 p.m. today at Tuscaloosa County High School with Rev. E.J. James, Jr. officiating. Burial will follow in Cedar Oak Memorial Park with Van Hoose and Steele Funeral Home & Cremation Services directing.
She was preceded in death by her father, James Lee Hamler, Sr.; her sister, Bobbie Jean Wilson; and her husband, Perry Dean Peoples, Jr.
Survivors include her mother, Queen Hamler; her daughters, DeSherri Carlisle (Daniel), Dana Peoples, Kimberly Ford (Victor), and Christina Peoples; her sister, Othello Philpot (Carlton); her brothers, James Lee Hamler, Jr. (Charlotte) and Lawrence Hamler (Myrtle); and her grandchildren, Devan Carlisle, Darien Carlisle, Michael Ford, and Mason Ford.
Debra Ann Peoples was born Sept. 6, 1952. With tireless devotion, Debra put God and her family first, which was evident from her many involvements. She was a faithful and active member of the New Zion Baptist Church. Debra loved reading the Sunday announcements with sheer enthusiasm and was committed to the missionary organization Circle #4. To her family, Debra was known as the “glue” as she was the one who organized many family gatherings, feeding everyone with loads of love and delicious home-cooked meals.
Her glowing presence and positive influence was also felt heavily in the Tuscaloosa community, where she worked for more than 30 years as a teacher. Debra, who had a master's degree in education from the University of Alabama, spent 21 of those years at Tuscaloosa High School teaching special education. She brought a limitless amount of patience, a nurturing spirit, and love to the job. Even after retiring in 2005, Debra returned to work as a substitute teacher.
Debra was the essence of what it truly means to serve. She lived her life everyday, fully committed to helping family, friends, and anyone she met in her Christian walk.
Published in Tuscaloosa News from April 16 to April 17, 2011.