In Memory of




Obituary for Mattie Jewel Dunn

Mattie Jewel Dunn, affectionately known as "Bay or Aunt Bay" by her siblings, nieces and nephews, was born July 2,1928 in Huntsville Texas. She was the third child born to the union of John (EDD) and Bertha Sandles.
She gave her life to Christ at an early age. Her Christian journey began with the Mustang Baptist Church in Prairie Hill, Texas under the Pastoral of the late Rev. G.B. Booker.

Unforeseen hardships early in life caused Mattie to leave school early without receiving her high school diploma in 1946. But she had a saying that she shared with many young people throughout her life. She believed that “because you’re down, don’t wallow in self-pity”. Her thirst to complete what she started was shared with her husband and children and she returned to Woodland High School 17 years later and graduated along with her brother Robert in 1963.

In 1947 she moved to Waco Texas where she met the love of her life Austin L. Dunn. On February 20th, 1948 she and Austin exchange marriage vows. Austin cherished his bride and fittingly called her by her middle name, “Jewel”. Blessed by this union, three children were born Joyce, Maurice and Cynthia.

She would let everyone know that Maurice’s wife Monica is her “daughter in love”. During their nearly 40 years together their love was on full display as they touched untold numbers of people with a love from Christ through them. First uniting with New Mt Olive, their membership moved to Pleasant Olive Baptist Church in 1953, pastored by Rev. J. W. Williams. Mattie sang in the choir, taught Sunday School, and enjoyed being a part of the women’s mission.

When her husband accepted his call into ministry, Mattie served as First Lady at Lovely Hope in Hubbard TX and Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in McGregor TX. Mattie returned to the church she always called home, Pleasant Olive, in 1999 and finally in 2010. At age 90, Mattie was delighted when she was able to be in her familiar seat, praising her Savior.

Mattie cleaned homes for officers at James Connally AFB before working as a production employee at J.M. Woods, manufacturing clothes. Finally, she began with a path that helped define her for 40 years. She loved babies and helping young mothers. Her work on staff at local daycare centers, including Horn’s Daycare and Living Word Christian Academy, earned her the enduring title of “Mama Dunn”.

An accomplished seamstress, Mattie enjoyed making little dresses or blankets for “her babies”. After finally leaving the workplace at age 80, Mattie supplemented her income with sales of her very special recipe for sweet and spicy pickles.

On Monday June 3, 2019, with her children by her side, Mattie went from her labor to rest. She was preceded in death by her husband Rev. Austin L. Dunn, her parents John (EDD) and Bertha Sandles, two brothers George, and Stanley. She leaves to cherish her precious memories by her children, devoted daughters, Joyce, Cynthia, and Monica, son Maurice, and grandsons Austin, Brian and Anthony.

Mattie is also survived by one sister Jane Estrada of Milwaukee, WI, brothers Brady Sandles of Dallas, TX, Rev. Joe Sandles (Verlin) Mesa AZ, Ray Sandles, (Beverly) Richmond CA, Claude Sandles {Dorothy Helen} Coolidge TX, Walter Sandles (Bobbie) Richmond CA, Robert Sandles, Sacramento CA, James Sandles (Marilyn) Rancho Cucamonga CA. and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and very special friends, many as close as family.

The Dunn family would like to express our gratitude to Mrs. Mary Smith for her extraordinary care provided for our mother. May God continue to Bless each of you.