Jackson matriarch succumbs at age 103

Funeral services set for Monday, June 18

by Gail M. Brown

Longtime Jackson resident Bernice Mae Allen Stimley died Wednesday morning, June 13, in a Jackson-area hospital. Stimley was 103-years-old.

A native of Meehan Junction, Miss., she was born Feb. 24, 1909, the same month and year the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) was founded. Like the founders of the NAACP, Stimley, early in life, desired to make life better for others, herself and her children; all of whom became lawyers.

Strong advocates for a good education, Stimley and her late husband Charles Edmond Stimley were honored by Harvard University for being the first family to have three children in Harvard Law School at the same time.

The woman who once told The Mississippi Link in an interview that she never imagined living to see and vote for the nation’s first African-American President is survived by two daughters Attorney Pernila “Penny” Stimley Brown and Attorney Charlene Stimley Priester, several grand and great grandchildren, and a number of other relatives and friends.

Her husband and two sons precede her in death:  Attorney Sherman E. Stimley and Attorney Frank D. Stimley.

Accordingly to family, funeral services are scheduled for Monday, June 18, at 10 a.m., at New Hope Baptist Church, Watkins Drive. The family hour will be held Sunday, June 17; at Collins Northside Chapel from 4-6 p.m. Burial will be in Garden Memorial.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to New Hope Christian School Library, 5202 Watkins Drive, Jackson, MS 39206. The telephone number is (601) 362-4776.

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