Thayla Burgess Hall was born Oct. 31, 1921 in Eagar and passed away Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020 in Eagar. She was the daughter of Ida Slade Burgess and Benjamin Burgess.

Thayla taught at the Eagar Springerville Consolidated District after graduating from Northern Arizona University in 1969. She loved hearing from former students that she instilled in them a lifelong love of reading and learning. She joined the Women’s Army Corp in 1942 and worked in the Pentagon. 

Thayla was preceded in death by her brother, Larry Burgess; husband, Ellis Merlyn Hall and son, Merlyn Brent Hall. 

She is survived by her daughters, Sherry (Pete) Dupre, Devonna (Richard) Hall, Cassandra (Coy) Smith; step-daughter, Shelley Hall; grandchildren Jacqueline Gardom, Bobbi Hales, Brandy Meyers, Lauren Proctor and the adopted children of Brent and Cheryl Hall, Carrie, Wade, Brian, Justin and Kay Lin.

Thayla began playing for the Primary in her church when she was 12 years old. She continued to play for weddings, funerals, school graduations and accompanied many musical numbers until she was well into her 80s. She played for Relief Society and was Ward Organist for many years. For three years, she drove to Pie Town to play for their church services. She played in the Baptist Church and the Catholic Church as well as the LDS Church and was ecumenical in her music.  

Thayla was known for her independence, integrity and was a loyal member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Thayla was asked to speak at the dedication of the Veteran’s Memorial in Eagar in 2018. In her speech she encouraged a more unified and patriotic America. 

Contributions in lieu of flowers may be made to the Women in Military Service for America Memorial. Go to to donate.

A viewing will be held at Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020 from 9:30-11 a.m. at Burnham Mortuary, Eagar. Graveside services will follow at 11 a.m. at Eagar Cemetery.

For those who have special memories and would like to leave an online condolence for Thayla’s family, visit

Burnham Mortuary, Eagar, handled arrangements.

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