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Rita M. Eady

Rita M. Eady, 89, passed away at home on Aug. 4, 2021. Rita was born March 6, 1932, in Gallman, the oldest daughter to Albert R. and Ina M. Mackey. The family moved to Crystal Springs after purchasing the beautiful Charles Morris Huber House in 1946. She attended Crystal Springs High School, graduating in three years, and was voted class friendliest. Earning a degree from Copiah-Lincoln Junior College, she was recognized as a talented seamstress and voted best dressed both years.
In 1952, she married the boy next door, Taylor Gibbs Eady Jr. They remained in Mississippi for several years, during which time she was employed as a senior secretary for Mississippi Chemical (Yazoo City), secretary to the administrator of King’s Daughters Hospital (Yazoo City), and finally as secretary to the president of Millsaps College (Jackson). When their daughter was born, she became a full-time mother and homemaker, briefly working part-time as the office manager for Dr. Eugene G. Wood.
The family moved to Baton Rouge, La., when her husband began his career with CF Industries. While there, she was active in the Broadmoor United Methodist Church, teaching Sunday school and assisting with children’s ministry programs. She was active as president of the Garden Club and Antiques Club, and especially enjoyed her Bridge Club. Rita was also active in her daughter’s life as Girl Scout leader, homeroom mother, PTA leader, and substitute teacher for Sherwood Forest Elementary. CF Industries transferred Gibbs to Lakeland, Fla., to Chattanooga, Tenn., and again back to Lakeland, where Rita spent the remainder of her life. She was a member of First United Methodist Church.
Rita was preceded in death by her parents; husband; and sisters, Janet M. Herdman, of Lakeland; and Mary M. Midtbo, of Boca Raton, Fla.
She is survived by her daughter, Melissa E. Murray (Brad); grandson, John T. Murray (Kerry); nieces, Julie M. Lambert (Mark), of Dallas, Texas; and Amy M. Kellogg (John); and brother-in-law, Kevin L. Midtbo, of Cocoa Beach, Fla.
The family would like to thank the nurses of Cornerstone Hospice, her caregivers, and especially Kathy Lincoln whose kindness, skilled caregiving, and companionship were so meaningful to Rita in the last two years of her life.
Memorial donations can be sent to the American Heart Association.
A service was held Aug. 7 at Heath Funeral Chapel. Interment followed at Oak Hill Burial Park in Lakeland, Fla.
“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1