Summary: Eulogy for a Christian woman
I want to thank Rhonda and Chris for the opportunity to remember and celebrate the life of Nan. It was a year and a half ago that we gathered for Eugene’s funeral and home going and now to be able to do the same for Nan is an honor. Like for so many, Nan had her difficulties late in life. She suffered from dementia, losing her short term memory. She dealt with the frustration of a loss of independence and she missed Eugene greatly. But now to celebrate her life and her long awaited reunion with Eugene is a joy and an honor, even in the midst of grief and loss. I think we can say with her: “It’s a beautiful day the Lord has made!”
One of the blessings of Eugene’s life was Nann. Eugene met Nan’s sister Bobbie Bailey at church, and formally introduced himself. Bobbie was not interested but Eugene asked if she had a sister and she said that Nan worked at a store called, “My Shoppe.” He went there with a letter of introduction. Eugene had already made his list of what he wanted in a life partner and he spent his courtship time wooing Nan. She fell in love after she realized he was genuine. Eventually, Nan brought home her foreign boyfriend who grew to love the farm and Nan's large family of siblings. Eugene and Nann were married in Mississippi in 1953 and later moved to Chalmette. They eventually moved to Gretna where they lived for over 40 years. Their favorite Scripture for their marriage was Genesis 2:24, “Therefore a man leaves his father and mother, and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh.” They celebrated 60 years of marriage before Eugene’s death, a feat by anyone’s account. They had an enviable and dynamic partnership of communication and collaboration. They were best friends and partners. They never said a single bad word to each other. They kept disagreements between themselves. Nann was Eugene’s world and Eugene’s was Nan’s world. She was his princess. You never saw them share affection publicly but they had precious love which lasted a lifetime and was evident just by looking at them in the presence of one another. Nan was devoted to caring for Eugene and their children.
Nan was a life long learner always reading the paper and keeping up on politics and world events. She loved gardening, baking cookies and pies, and family celebrations. She was quite an athlete in her day and later in life loved listening and watching LSU football, pro football, and college basketball. I would be remiss if I didn't also mention her love of Pete Maravich. She loved great fashion and colorful styles and encouraged her daughters in this as well. Her life though simple was filled with wonderful small things that helped change people's lives or make it easier for them- praying for others, donating to missions, giving groceries to the needy, and making sacrifices great and small to send her daughters to college and even paying for Eugene’s younger brother. She never took people in the service industry for granted and thanked them for what they did. She was a proud and dedicated American and viewed voting at elections a privilege and a duty since she realized how many lives had been sacrificed on freedom and democracy.