Published 10:12 am Tuesday, March 7, 2017


Ernestine Black

MARKS–Mrs. Ernestine “Granny” Black, age 84, passed away Friday evening March 3, 2017 at her residence near Crowder. Services were held Sunday at Crowder Baptist Church. Interment was at Lambert Cemetery.
Granny retired from Garan Inc. after 31 years of service. She was a devoted mother and family woman. She was a friend to all who knew her and a loving “Granny” to many. She was a woman of God with a true servant’s heart and was a member of Crowder Baptist Church.
Surviving Mrs. Black are two daughters, Pat Maddox of Florine, La., and Debbie (Johnny) Johns of Lambert; one son, David Black of Crowder; one sister, Betty  (Pat) Malone of Darling; five grandchildren, ten great grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Elmer Black; her parents, W.S. and Eva Black, and one son, Glen Black.
Memorial contributions may be made to Breast Cancer Foundation or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Kimbro Funeral Home had charge.

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Glenn Bruce

MARKS–Mr. Glenn Bruce, age 50, passed away Friday evening March 3, 2017 at his residence in Locke Station. Services were held Monday March 6 at Goodwill Worship Center in Locke Station. Interment was in Forrest Memorial Park in Batesville.
Mr. Bruce was the owner of Bruce Trucking and a member of Locke Station Baptist Church.
Surviving Mr. Bruce are his wife Linda Bruce of Locke Station; two daughters, Samantha (Joe) Reed of Batesville, and Valarie (Joshua) Brown of Batesville; one son, Bradley (Brittany) Toliver of Hernando; one sister, Donna (Buck) Crumpler of Sardis; one brother, Todd (Kim) Bruce of Sardis; nine grandchildren, Tyler Reed of Batesville, Hannah Key of Hattiesburg, Chandler Reed of Batesville, Christian Key of Batesville, Brody Toliver of Hernando, Madison Reed of Batesville, Joshua Key of Batesville, Braylee Toliver of Hernando, and JonathanLouis Brown of Batesville.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Edwin and Doris Bruce, and one brother, Mark Bruce.
Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Kimbro Funeral Home had charge.

Gentry Bell Corner

BATESVILLE—Gentry Bell Corner, 88, passed away February 28, 2017 at her residence.
Funeral services were held March 6 at Cooley’s Mortuary Chapel.  Pastor Zannie Leland officiated.
Interment followed at Macedonia Church Cemetery.
Ms. Corner was born November 2, 1928 to George Connor and Maude H. Handy of Batesville.
She was a custodian at South Panola School District and a member of Mt. Olivet M.B. Church in Batesville.

Neil Darby

COLUMBIA—Neil Darby of Columbia, MS passed away on the evening of March 1, 2017 surrounded by his family and resting peacefully at the Myrtles Nursing Center in Columbia.
Mr. Darby is survived by his wife, Anna Raden Darby of Columbia; his daughter, Dawn Darby Dias and her husband Peter Dias and sons R.J. and Matthew Dias of Columbia; his son-in-law Bill Harris of Hattiesburg; his daughter Terri Darby Moore, her husband Darren Moore and children Jacob, Stella, and Alex Moore of Arlington, Texas; and his daughter Jessica Taylor Kirkpatrick and her children Jett and Cash of Petal.  Also grieving Mr. Darby’s death are his sister, Jo Blair, and his nieces and nephews: Al Darby and family, Melanie Darby Whitfield and family, Vicki Blair, Randy Blair and family, Stacy Blair Cheek and family, and Morgan Carroll and family- all of Batesville.  Mr. Darby was preceded in death by his daughter, Mindy Darby Harris; his siblings Jerry Darby and Kay Carroll; and his parents, George and Lillie Mae Darby.
Neil Darby was born and raised in Panola County, Mississippi and graduated from Pope High School in 1962 and Mississippi State University in 1968.  He met Anna Raden at Mississippi State and immediately knew he wanted to marry her.  They wed in 1966.
Mr. Darby spent the majority of his career as a Forester with International Paper Company.  He worked all over the state of Mississippi and managed tens of thousands of acres of timber for the company.  He was well loved and respected by those who worked for him and implicitly trusted by his superiors.  He retired from International Paper Company in 1999 and started his own timber company, Deer Creek Forestry.  He enjoyed the slower pace and eventually eased himself into full-time retirement and grandparent duties.
Mr. Darby’s work meant his family lived in many of Mississippi’s towns-Grenada, Vicksburg, Brookhaven, Natchez, and then finally retirement in Columbia.  In each town, the indelible mark of Neil Darby has been felt.  His faith was his passion and he lived his life to serve and disciple others in their relationship with Jesus.  In Vicksburg, he joyfully and tirelessly served in the high school and junior high ministries at Bowmar Avenue Baptist Church (now Crossway Church).  Even today, 30 years later, people remark how he loved them, encouraged them, and taught them.
The Darbys lived in Brookhaven for only two years, but even in that short time, he was instrumental in planning events for and teaching Scripture to the kids at Easthaven Baptist Church.
His service continued at First Baptist Church of Natchez, MS where he helped with the high school and college ministries for many years-planning trips, activities, Bible studies and teaching Vacation Bible School to junior high students.
Even when he retired to Columbia, Mr. Darby continued to serve at First Baptist there- helping with mission trips and coaching basketball leagues.  Simply put, he life was one lived poured out in service to others.
In all of these places he is remembered for his humor, encouragement, and dedication; his commitment to daily prayer and Bible study; and his love of planning outdoor activities.  The constant refrain from those who knew and loved him is that the impact he had on their lives was immeasurable.
He was so very good to his church no matter where he lived, but that is only a glimpse of what he meant to his family.  Those who were honored to call him Daddy and Granddaddy are truly blessed.
He loved his girls and taught them to take care of themselves and to take care of others.  He rocked his grandbabies when they were little and took them to the zoo when they were bigger.  His heart was broken as he watched his middle daughter, Mindy Harris, suffer and die from a brain tumor, but his faith stood firm.  For so many- his wife, his daughters, his grandchildren, his nieces and nephews- he is the reason we are who we are and we will miss him today and always.
The Darby family would like to thank the Myrtles Nursing Center for their loving care of Mr. Darby over the past year.  They would also like to thank First Baptist Church of Columbia and especially the Mary Sunday School class and the Hugh L. Dickens Sunday School class for the helping care for both Mr. Darby and his family over the past several years.
Funeral services were held March 5 at Hawthorn Funeral Home in Columbia.   A short graveside service and burial were held on March 6 in Hattiesburg at the Highland Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations, in Mr. Darby’s name, to be made to The Cross at 107 Quail Run Road, Batesville, MS 38606.