From 1919 to 2019, this Chi Omega Sister has lived 100 years of life and 80 years as a Chi Omega!
Jimmie Louis Cory was born in Waco, Texas, on October 18, 1919, as the daughter of Dr. James Loucullus Stowe, whom she was named after, and Sarah Irma Jesson. She joined the family with her older brother, Jesson Stowe, and sister, Kathleen Stowe Hoy.
At the time of Rho Delta’s founding, Jimmie Lou was a junior at Texas College of Mines and Metallurgy, which would later become University of Texas – El Paso, and she served on the first executive board as Vice President.
Jimmie Lou Cory, second row, third from the left, was one of 14 original charter members of Rho Delta/El Paso
Jimmie Lou mentioned in the 1939 issue of The Eleusis announcing her as a charter member of Rho Delta
Jimmie Lou’s commitment to service was sharpened during her collegiate years as her involvement spanned every corner of campus. She was named “Who’s Who in American Universities,” a national recognition program of outstanding collegians, for two years. She was in the honor society, ROTC, participated in numerous Little Theatre productions, was a member of Alpha Psi Omega, superintendent of the junior department of the First Baptist Church, president of the Forensic Society and College Players, participated in speech competitions, and was co-president of the Co-ed Association. On June 2, 1941 she graduated from Texas College of Mines and Metallurgy with her bachelor’s degree.
Jimmie Lou Cory featured in The Eleusis, 1940
She married Charles Fuller Cory who achieved the rank of Colonel while serving on General Patton’s Legal Staff in World War II. He became a well-respected attorney in Denver, practicing well into his 80’s. He lived to be 101.
After completing college, Jimmie Lou taught at El Paso High School and lived at home with her family until Charles returned from the war. Her collegiate experience instilled a commitment to the Fraternity that didn’t waver after graduation, as she went on to serve as president of the local Chi Omega Alumnae Chapter. She also volunteered for the Red Cross while in El Paso. After the war she and her husband moved to Denver, Colorado. It was here that she devoted her life to raising her three children.
Jimmie Lou’s commitment to service remained a priority as she served as president of numerous organizations at her children’s schools and in the community. She volunteered countless hours with the Girl Scouts and music programs, and she wrote and produced plays for her church. She is an accomplished and prolific poet, always writing thank you poems to doctors, nurses, and people who have cared for her. Jimmie Lou has notebooks overflowing with poems from church programs she created, holidays, and notable events in her life.
Jimmie Lou in her Boulder, Colorado home in 2019
As her 100th birthday quickly approaches this October, we chatted with Jimmie Lou Cory about her long life and what’s most important to her.
What do you remember about your experience as a Chi Omega in college?
I loved all the friends I made and enjoyed the activities, but also, the charity work.
How did Chi Omega remain a part of your life after your collegiate years?
I was president of the alumnae association and carried this standard of volunteering, organizing, and dedication into my life in Denver.
What’s your idea of a perfect day?
One where I volunteered for everything!
What are you most proud of?
I am proud of being a Chi Omega and serving in so many volunteer capacities and being a good Christian.
You’re about to turn 100 this year. What’s your secret to a long life?
Patience and listening. You learn more by listening than talking all of the time.
What advice would you give to young women in college today?
Jimmie Lou referred us to her poem, Little Things.
Little Things, by Jimmie Lou Cory
Jimmie Lou will celebrate her 100th birthday on October 18, 2019. Her family consists of her three children Diana (Boulder, Colorado), Carolyn (deceased), and Charles (Irvine, California), her eight grandchildren, and eight great grandchildren. Her granddaughter, Samantha Stowe Cory, followed in Jimmie Lou’s footsteps and became a Chi Omega at Beta Beta/Washington State University. Jimmie Lou had saved her Chi Omega pin and other mementos and was able to gift them to Samantha when she joined the Sisterhood. Today, Jimmie Lou resides in an assisted living facility in Boulder, Colorado, near her daughter Diana.