Margaret Radford

Long-time Chattanooga area resident, Margaret “Patsy” Radford’s life and experiences as a house parent of an orphanage and as a civil rights activist are being highlighted in a national magazine.


Radford is a resident at Life Care Center of Hixson, a skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility in Tennessee, and she is being featured in the 2019 edition of LEADER magazine, a publication of Life Care Centers of America.


Radford and her husband served as house parents at the Bonny Oaks orphanage, where they raised up to 50 children at once, many of whom are still an active part of each other’s lives. Radford was always sure to love every child in her care with excellence and to teach them the lessons they would need to be successful in life.


Radford also began her work as a civil rights activist at Bonny Oaks, as she was often in conversation with the superintendent about desegregating the children. In fact, Radford made numerous strides forward in her integration efforts at the orphanage.


After her time at Bonny Oaks, Radford fought for racial equality in schools across Hamilton County. She often went before Hamilton County’s Board of Commissioners to advocate for integration of students and better facilities in schools. Even after the legal end of segregation, she regularly visited the schools to make sure the students were not having any trouble.


Radford has earned numerous awards for her work, including her designation as the 1998 Black Pioneer Woman of Excellence by the National Coalition of 100 Black Women’s Chattanooga chapter.


For more information or to obtain a complimentary copy of LEADER magazine and read the full story, stop by Life Care Center of Hixson at 5798 Hixson Homeplace or call 423-842-0049.

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