- Cullman, Alabama

January 16, 2013

Joe Wayne Maddox

Cullman Funeral Home

— Joe Wayne Maddox

Funeral services for Joe Wayne Maddox, 73, of Cullman will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013, at Corinth West Methodist Church, Bro. Wayne Jetton, Father Marcus Voss, OSB, and Edwin Guthrie officiating, with interment in the church cemetery. The body will lie in state from 1 to 2 p.m. at the church, with a singing at 1:45 p.m.

Cullman Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Mr. Maddox passed away Tuesday, Jan. 15. He was born March 13, 1939, to Jay and Hettie Leora Jennings Maddox. He served in education and schools all his life. Joe attended Battleground School 1945-1950. There he had two excellent teachers, Miss Kathleen Brooks (Strickland) and Mrs. Nora B. Wallace, who were greatly influential to his early education. He attended West Point High School 1950-1956. There, Mrs. Bettina (Raymond) Higdon arranged opportunities for Joe in “speech,” “drama,” “academics” and “guidance.” He attended St. Bernard College 1956-1960. At St. Bernard College, these individuals helped him develop educational competencies: Father Eugene, Father John, Father Charles, Father Urban, Father Pat, Father Tom, Bruno Massodi, Matthew Semrick; also, Sister Catherine Flynn. Father Jerome was chairperson of the Education Department (Joe’s major), and Abbot Hilary provided much assistance to him.

During college, Joe worked half days at VJ Elmore’s, a dime store in Cullman. Mr. Paul Thomas was the manager. In the summer of 1959, Paul bought Western Auto in Hartselle, and Joe worked there from 1959-1960. Mr. Thomas assisted Joe very much — provided many opportunities.

Joe graduated from St. Bernard College (SBC) in 1960. He began teaching math at West Point High School at the age of 21, and was quite successful. In 1963, Joe obtained an MA from the University of Alabama and became assistant principal at West Point High School, where he continued teaching math, and sponsored the Thespians Drama Club. He also assisted Coach Harry Ray in junior high coaching. Mr. George Clegg, principal of West Point High School, was the most influential person in his life other than his mother, Hettie Jennings Maddox, and his wife, Kathryn Walker Maddox. Joe received his doctorate in education from the University of Alabama in 1974.

Joe became a member of the Education Department at St. Bernard College in 1965-79. During this time, he assisted literally hundreds of individuals from our area  credential themselves for teaching. Among these, at least 20 became principals of Cullman County and City schools. The ones of whom he was most proud were the excellent teachers who established excellence in their programs: Elementary education, math and other subjects.

During the last phases of Joe’s career, he worked in varied roles in Cullman City Schools, taught graduate classes at Alabama A&M University, and taught college math at Wallace State College. He taught in the Cullman and North Alabama area schools for over 40 years.

Joe was also ACT testing administrator, and served as chairman of several southern association teams, which reviewed school programs for accreditation. He was involved in these programs for over 40 years.

Joe taught a Sunday school class at Corinth West Church (northwest Cullman County) for over 50 years and served as an elected deacon. He also served on the education board for the First Congregational Methodist Church.

Joe’s family was of utmost importance to him. He was devoted to his wife, Kathryn, and continued to be very proud of his daughters: Melanie, a graduate of the University of Alabama, and Shelly, a graduate of Auburn University.

The family would like to extend a special thank you to Eileen Bryant Burke, Kathie Shockley and Tina Whiting, three wonderful ladies who provided excellent care and support for Joe and the family.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Survivors include his wife of 40 years, Kathryn Walker Maddox; two daughters, Melanie Kaye Maddox and Kathy Michelle “Shelly” Maddox, both of Birmingham; a brother, Darrell Ray (Ann) Maddox of Vinemont; two sisters-in-law, Joyce Blackmon of Hartselle and Linda Walker of Vinemont; a brother-in-law, Jack Walker of Guntersville; and a host of family and friends.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Dr. Joe Wayne Maddox Memorial Scholarship Fund, Attn: Melanie Maddox, at BBVA Compass Bank.

Visitation will be Friday, January 18 from 6-8 p.m. at the funeral home.

Friends may sign the online guestbook at