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Eliot Battle remembered as leader, education pioneer

By Sherree Burruss, Sports Reporter, sherree.burruss@kmiz.com
Published On: Jun 28 2013 09:20:46 AM CDT
Updated On: Jun 29 2013 08:16:10 PM CDT
Eliot Battle

Eliot Battle

COLUMBIA, Mo. -

A celebration of life service for Eliot Battle was held in downtown Columbia Saturday.

Battle's family, friends and many former students gathered at 11 a.m. in the sanctuary of Missouri United Methodist Church on Ninth Street.

He helped integrate students during his 40-year tenure with the district.

Dr. Battle leaves behind a legacy that touched thousands.

Some of those touched filled pews in the church Saturday morning.

Family members shared memories about Battle, like his favorite word - "super."

"Uncle Eliot had his own special place in the hearts and immeasurable impact on the lives of his family. No doubt he is my hero, he is my superman," said Pat Battle Shirely, Eliot Battle's niece.

And a superman is how he was viewed in the community.

"My grandfather was a rare example as one of those people that the more I learned about him the more I came to admire him and appreciate all that he had done and accomplished in his life," Charles Thomas Jr., Battle's grandson, said.

The new Battle High School is named after his wife, Muriel.

Now there's a movement to name a new elementary school for Eliot.

It's a testament to how influential the whole Battle family has been in Columbia.

"He talked the talk but what made his life so authentic is that he walked the walk," Muriel "Jeanne" Battle Browder said, daughter of Eliot Battle.

Battle died earlier this month from injuries in a car crash at 88 years old.

le was held Saturday at 11 a.m. in the sanctuary of Missouri United Methodist Church, on 9th Street in Columbia.

He helped integrate students during his 40-year tenure with the district.

Dr. Battle leaves behind a legacy that touched thousands.

Some of those filled pews in the church Saturday morning.

Family members shared memories about Dr. Battle, like his favorite word - super.

"Uncle Eliot had his own special place in the hearts and immeasurable impact on the lives of his family. no doubt he is my hero, he is my super man," said Pat Battle Shirely, Eliot Battle's niece.

And a superman is how he was viewed in the community.

"My grandfather was a rare example as one of those people that the more i learned about him the more i came to admire him and appreciate all that he had done and accomplished in his life," Charles Thomas, Jr., Battle's grandson, said.

The new Battle High School is named after his wide Muriel.

Now there's a movement to name a new elementary school for Eliot.

A testament to how influential the whole Battle family has been in Columbia.

"He talked the talk but what made his life so authentic is that he walked the walk of his talk," Muriel "Jeanne" Battle Browder, said daughter of Eliot Battle.

Battle died earlier this month from injuries in a car crash at 88 years old.

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