Maye Thiessen, born September 30, 1931, died in her sleep on January 18, 2021. She was born in Kanawha County, WV to Howard and Ethel Robinson, the seventh of their nine surviving children.
Maye grew up in Campbells Creek, WV, and attended DuPont High School. Following graduation, she went to commercial college and trained as a secretary. Subsequently she worked for GMAC in Charleston, WV, prior to and between her time at Prairie Bible Institute in Alberta, Canada, and Appalachian Bible College, Beckley, WV, where she graduated, and after her first years in Haiti as a missionary.
Active in Big Bottom Missionary Baptist Church, Tad, WV, and then The Bible Center Church, Charleston, WV, Maye felt the call to missions and attended the above schools prior to joining West Indies Mission (later known as World Team) and going to Haiti as a secretary in the Fall of 1959. While on furlough she met the love of her life JD Thiessen at the missions’ farm in Lancaster County, PA. October 11, 1969, they married, and after some time in North America, returned to Haiti where they served together as missionaries until 1982.
Maye truly loved Haiti and its people. She confidently rode her motorcycle, around the mission center and countryside. Once a little too confidently, while avoiding a mud puddle, she rode her motorcycle into a six-foot-deep hole dug for utility work and walked away with only a sprained ankle. (This story has several versions depending upon the teller….)
In August of 1982, JD and Maye moved to Tahlequah when JD started work at Go Ye Village. Tahlequah truly became their home, and they were blessed with many friends, neighbors, and church family here in Tahlequah, where they lived happily until JD’s death in 2019.
Maye is survived by son James and his wife Jennifer, grandchildren Audrey, Franklin, Alyssa, and Samantha. She is also survived by her: identical twin Faye Robinson, and youngest brother Roger and his wife Annie Robinson, sisters-in-law, and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family would like to thank everyone at Cherokee County Nursing Center who truly were her family in the last 18 months and cared for her as if she were theirs, Compassus Hospice, and Hart Funeral Home.
Interment will be at Tahlequah City Cemetery, Wednesday, January 20, 2021. The funeral will be family only at the graveside, weather permitting, or at the pavilion. Friends are welcome to pay their respects by driving by.