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Vanis Ely

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Vanis Ely Obituary
Vanis R. Ely

Madison, MS

Vanis Raymon Ely, 85, of Madison, died Tuesday, February 12, 2013, after a brief stay at Hospice Ministries in Ridgeland, MS.

Vanis was born May 26, 1927, in Eoline, Alabama to Melvin H. and Lila Jane Hubbard Ely. He was the seventh of thirteen children. The family moved to Harleston, MS (Jackson County) in 1930. After quitting school to work at Ingalls and join the Navy, he graduated from Moss Point HS in 1947. While in the Navy, he served at the Amphibious Training Base in Coronado, CA. After high school, he attended Hinds JC in Raymond, MS where he met and married (9/2/49) Betty Jane Miller, his wife of almost 63 years who passed away August 12, 2012.

Vanis went to work at MS Bedding Co. (Spring Air Mattress Co.) in 1950 and retired from there in 1990. He served 20 years in the USN Reserves, Seabee Unit 618. He then joined the US Army National Guard, 131st Aviation Battalion and served for 15 more years. Vanis joined the Mason's in 1953 and was a 3rd degree Mason, Blue Lodge #626, Leavell Woods. The Ely's joined St. Columb's Episcopal Church in 1956, and transferred to All Saints in 1962. While at All Saints, Vanis served as Jr. Warden, Sr. Warden, a member of the Vestry and as Verger. For many years, Vanis upholstered furniture for several interior designers in the Jackson area. In 2004, Vanis and Betty moved from their longtime home on Terry Road to live with their daughter, Dean, in Madison County.

When Raymond was young, Vanis enjoyed coaching summer league baseball and leading his Boy Scout Troup. Vanis spent a lot of time fishing, hunting and volunteering at the John I. Hay Boys and Girls Club Camp; cutting grass and up keeping the grounds. At home, he especially enjoyed bream fishing off the pier in the backyard.

Admired and respected by his family, he was lovingly referred to as "Poppa" by all. When one of his grandchildren was asked where he wanted to go to college, he responded "I want to go where Poppa went. He knows everything!" We all agree.

Vanis is survived by son Raymond E. Ely (Christine) of Milton, FL, daughters Dean E. Black (Mitch) of Madison, MS and Chris E. Macumber (Kevin) of Flora, MS; grandchildren Tammy Easley, Mitchell Ely, Adam Ely, Wayne Black (Sally), Sara Black, Chad Macumber and Corey Macumber; great grandchildren Kristine Walker, Logan Ely, and Ely Reed Black; great great grandchildren Hayden and Axel; brothers Curtis Ely of Harleston, MS and Carl Ely of St. Elmo, AL.

He is preceded in death by his parents, his wife Betty, his brothers Charles Ely, Melvin Ely, Grady Ely, Frank Ely and John Ely; his sisters Myrtle E. Holmberg, Francis E. Mixon, Joyce E. Deakle, Barbara E. McMillan and Mary Elizabeth Ely.

Visitation will be Friday, February 15, 2013, at All Saints Episcopal Church, 147 Daniel Lake Blvd., beginning at 9:30 a.m. with the service to begin at 11. Burial will be Saturday, February 16, 2013, at 11 a.m. at Rosedale Cemetery, Lucedale, MS (Harleston Community), with visitation beginning at 9:30.

The family would like to express their gratitude to the wonderful employees of MS Home Care Madison and Hospice Ministries Inpatient Facility. We also want to thank Dr. F. Earl Fyke, III and his nurse Kakie for the care and compassion they showed our Dad for the last three years.

Memorials may be sent to Blair Batson Children's Hospital, Division of Public Affairs, UMMC, 2500 North State Street, Jackson, MS 39216, or Hospice Ministries, Inc., 450 Towne Center Blvd., Ridgeland, MS 39157.

Visit baldwinleejackson.com for online guestbook.

Published in Clarion Ledger on Feb. 14, 2013
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