Robert Gene Wiggins(1943 - 2013)

Robert Gene Wiggins


Robert Gene Wiggins, 69, of Hattiesburg, passed away February 21, 2013, at his home. Services will be at 10 a.m., Tuesday, February 26, 2013, at Hardy Street Baptist Church, followed by burial in Highland Cemetery.

Gene graduated from Forest High School, earned his Associate's Degree at East Central Junior College, his Bachelor of Science Degree in Journalism and Master of Science Degree in Communication from USM and his Doctorate Degree in Journalism from Southern Illinois University. He was the first Director of the School of Mass Communication at USM from 1983-2001. He was the statistician for USM football for more than 30 years and basketball for a number of years. He was the 1992 Mississippi Educational Administrator of the Year and twice received the Excellence in Teaching Award from USM.

Gene was a member of Hardy Street Baptist Church where he taught the Charlie Brooks Sunday School Class and served on various committees, including the Pastor Search Committee. A member of the fire department since 1978, he had served as President of the Board of Directors of the Northeast Lamar Fire, Rescue and EMS since 1993 and was a former volunteer fire fighter. He was a member and former president (1989-1990) of the Rotary Club of Hattiesburg Sunrise and also served as Public Relations chair, Executive Board, District 684, Rotary International from 1988-1995.

He served in the U. S. Air Force and Mississippi Air National Guard as Public Information Officer from 1962-1970. From 1965-1968, he was assistant sports editor for the Jackson Daily News and from 1968-1970, he was the sports editor for the Hattiesburg American. He also edited the Olympic Record for the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

He was preceded in death by his father, Albert Moore Wiggins; his mother, Etha Wiggins Jenkins; stepfather, G.L. Jenkins; and brother, David Wayne Wiggins.

He is survived by his wife, Linda Wiggins of Hattiesburg; one son, Matthew Wiggins and his wife, Natalie of Hattiesburg; and two grandchildren, Carolyn Elizabeth Wiggins and Ezekiel Gene Wiggins.

Visitation will be Monday from 5-8 p.m. at Moore Funeral Home in Hattiesburg.

Memorial donations may be directed to:



Published in the Hattiesburg American on Feb. 24, 2013