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Bobbye Harkins

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Bobbye Harkins Obituary
Bobbye Harkins

New Orleans, LA

Bobbye Roberts Harkins, widow of John Patrick Harkins, Sr., died at her home in New Orleans, LA on Saturday, December 17, 2011 at the age of 98.

She was born in Simpson County, MS, a daughter of the late Drussila Walker Roberts and the late William Walter Roberts. She is survived by her three children, John Patrick Harkins, Jr. of New Orleans, LA; Johnnita Harkins Cook (Dr. William Alan) of Pelham, AL; and Walter Michael Harkins, Sr. (Susan Sawaya) of Jackson, MS. She also is survived by eight grandchildren, Alayna Cook Hornsby (Stuart), Charlottesville, VA; the Reverend Jonathan Alan Cook (Candace Handley), Northport, AL; Courtney Cook Rodgers (Geoffrey), Birmingham, AL; the Reverend Brandon Cook (Rebecca Rainboldt), Long Beach, CA; Walter Michael Harkins, Jr. (Waverly Almon), Madison, MS; Justin Patrick Harkins, Dallas TX; Madeleine Drusilla Harkins Roy, Claremont, CA; and David Walker Roy Harkins, New Orleans, LA. In addition, she is the great-grandmother of six with two more to be born soon. She was pre-deceased by her sister, Oneta Roberts Boxx (Solomon Estus), Simpson County, MS and a great-grandson John Whittaker Cook, Northport, AL. She is survived also by another sister, Willene Roberts Sartin (Floyd Bennett) Simpson County, MS. Additionally, she is survived by several brothers- and sisters-in-law and a host of nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, great-great-nieces and great-great nephews, cousins and friends.

Affectionately known as "Moe" by her descendants, the name carried through to her grandchildren's friends and families (and sometimes "Photo Granny"). Photography was one of her passions, and she especially enjoyed watching and photographing her progeny participate in sports. And to many, she was known as dear "Miss Bobbye."

Bobbye concluded her education at the School of Nursing at the Mississippi Baptist Hospital, earning her R.N. Degree. She became surgical assistant and office manager for The Clinic of Doctors Long and Dees.

She married John Patrick Harkins, Sr. of the St. Anne's Community in Leake County, MS on May 31, 1939. Together they began Harkins, the Florist in Jackson, which eventually included six flower shops, a growing operation with 20 greenhouses and shrubbery farm, a landscaping company, a pet shop and a candy and greeting card business.

With the outbreak of World War II she joined Dr. Long at the Selective Service Center for Mississippi, holding the highest civilian position.

With the birth of her second child, she retired to be a homemaker, shepherding her children through many activities. Scouting was of special interest to her, and she was proud that all three became Eagle Scouts or Curved Bar.

She was an accomplished horsewoman, and she and her husband for many years helped present an annual Mississippi State Horse Show at the Fairgrounds.

In the mid-1950s Bobbye developed a lifelong interest in genealogy. Long before the days of computer-aided research, she visited cemeteries throughout Mississippi, interviewed older generations, sought out family bibles and spent countless hours with microfilmed records. Her first and proudest line was proving her descent from Lt. Isaac Walker and and his wife, Elizabeth Stuart, participants in the ill-fated attempt to bring "Bonnie Prince Charlie" to the British throne.

First a member of the Magnolia State Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, she went on to join 30 different patriotic, lineage-related societies. Her greatest devotion was to the National Society of the Colonial Dames of the XVII Century. During her two-year term as President General, she visited 49 states at least once. She remained active in the group's national board until relatively recent times.

Services will be held at Wright and Ferguson Chapel on High Street in Jackson, MS. on Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. Visitation will be held from 10 until 11 a.m. Her two grandsons who are pastors, the Reverend Jonathan Cook of the Tuscaloosa Vineyard Church and the Reverend Brandon Cook of the Long Beach Christian Fellowship will officiate. The eulogy will be delivered by Moe's long-time, fellow Honorary President General of the National Society, Colonial Dames XVII Century, Mary Johnston of Athens, AL. Grandson Justin Harkins will share remembrances. Burial will follow at Lakewood Memorial Park in Jackson, MS.

Pallbearers will be Hardy Baldwin, Dr. Randy Boxx, Dr. Alan Cook, David Harkins, Justin Harkins, Michael Harkins, Geoffrey Rodgers and Bennett Sartin. Honorary pallbearers will be Michael Etheridge, Ansley Harkins, Stuart Hornsby and Floyd Sartin, Sr.

The family wishes to express immense gratitude to Edna Carson Wiltz for her care of Moe throughout he years in New Orleans. Perpetual gratitude as well goes to Cher Mark who orchestrated care in the final weeks.

Those wishing to make memorial donations in Bobbye's name may do so to Trinity Episcopal Church, 1329 Jackson Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70130; The New Hope Cemetery Fund, 239 Boxx Road, Mt. Olive, MS 39119; or the Scholarship Fund, National Society Colonial Dames XVII Century, 1300 New Hampshire Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036.

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Published in Clarion Ledger on Dec. 19, 2011
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