Fred L. Brooks, Jr
Frederick Lee Brooks, Jr., died Thursday, June 26, 2014 at Hospice Ministries in Ridgeland. Visitation will be held on Friday from 4 to 6 pm at Wright and Ferguson in Raymond and again on Saturday beginning at 10 am followed by an 11:00 am service in the sanctuary of Raymond United Methodist Church. Burial will follow in the Raymond Cemetery.
Born in Meridian, MS on October 7, 1924 to Fred L. Brooks, Sr. and Marguerite Ollhoft Brooks, he grew up in the Meridian area and graduated from Ponta Hills High School, then Meridian Junior College. His father, Fred, Sr., was a First World War veteran and ran a general store outside of Meridian off of what is now old Highway 39. His mother, Marguerite, kept the house and worked as a dietician. Fred, Jr., grew up during the depression years and experienced the loss of the family home when it burned to the ground.
Having been influenced by educators during his formative years in the Meridian area, Fred pursued studies in psychology, and later in speech and education at what is now the University of Southern Mississippi. He was awarded the first Master's degree of that institution, his in education.
Fred taught school in various places, including Perkinston Junior College, Sandersville, Pelahatchie, New Albany, and Moss before landing at home at Hinds Jr. College in 1956. He taught speech and theater at Hinds until 1985, also serving as chair of that department. The new theater and speech building were named in his honor.
In the summer of 1957, Fred met Sue Longest from Gulfport while attending a doctoral class in speech education at Mississippi Southern. They were married in 1958. Later Fred and Sue would both teach speech at Hinds Community College, each with offices in the Brooks building.
Fred enjoyed people, the arts, gardening, and shopping to find bargains. He was a very active member of Raymond United Methodist Church, where he served in various capacities, including Lay Leader, Chair of the Administrative Board, Lay Delegate to Annual Conference, Sunday school superintendant and Sunday school teacher. Fred was a friend to many from different walks of life. He enjoyed being active in the Southmen and Friends group in his later years. He was a charter member and General in the Friends of Raymond. He lived firm in his faith conviction that God is love, and that love is the greatest power in the world, and that "love makes the world go 'round."
Preceded in Death by his parents and an infant brother, Mr. Brooks is survived by his wife of 56 years, Sue Brooks; two children, the Reverend Dr. Frederick "Rick" Lee Brooks, III (Lynn), and Rebecca Ann Brooks Prewitt; four grandchildren, Matthew Alan Prewitt (Ashley), Catherine Lynn Brooks, Shane Frederick Prewitt, and John Wesley Brooks.
The family requests that any memorial contributions be made to the Raymond United Methodist Church building fund.
Published in Clarion Ledger on June 27, 2014