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Virda Frances Love Ford, 1918-2024



Virda Frances Love Ford

Virda Frances Love Ford passed away peacefully at her niece’s home on Saturday, January 27, 2024. She was 105 years old.

Frances was born in El Dorado, Arkansas on June 3, 1918, to Cornelius Love and Rhoda Nelson Love. She was raised in Sharkey County near Anguilla and attended Anguilla schools. She was nicknamed “Frankie” by her father, which stuck with some of her siblings, nieces, and nephews. She married Armond E. Ford on September 5, 1936, in Rolling Fork and the couple moved to near Greenville, where their daughter Grace was born. Then the family moved to near Benoit, where their son Gene was born in Cleveland, then they moved to near Glen Allen. The family settled in the Tallula Community of Issaquena County in January 1945 where they owned and operated a cotton and soybean farm for 48 years. She assisted in the Tallula Post Office and was a Sunday School teacher at Tallula Baptist Church for many years as she loved children and teaching them about Jesus and the Bible. She frequently hosted the community children on many occasions as her home was always open and welcoming. In 1971 they bought a house in Vicksburg and spent time in both Tallula and Vicksburg. She was an avid gardener, having lots of flowers, vegetables, and fruit trees. She also enjoyed painting canvases, making quilts, crocheting, knitting, needlepoint, and working on ceramics and also enjoyed cooking and baking. She belonged to several knitting, art, and gardening clubs. Her home was always open and welcoming for family, friends, neighbors, and her knitting clubs. She was known for her large spreads of delicious food when hosting friends or family gatherings. She was also known for her outgoing, friendly personality and never met a stranger. She could strike up a conversation with anyone anywhere. Her animated personality, along with her humorous southern drawl, came through in the funny stories she loved to tell her friends and family. She also loved to read, and her favorite book was the Bible. Her love for Dr. Pepper was legendary and she once claimed that it helped her age well. She also regularly used sunscreen, vitamin E, and floppy hats to keep her skin looking great and regularly walked miles around her neighborhood and the Vicksburg National Military Park or working out at the gym to stay fit. She always looked very young for her age. Above all, she loved Jesus, and she loved her family, especially her grandchildren. She was a member of Bovina Baptist Church.

Along with helping on the farm, Frances owned and operated Tamette’s Needlecraft Shop (named after her two granddaughters Tammy and Annette) in the Battlefield Mall for a number of years in the 1970’s. She also owned and operated a beauty salon and worked at TG&Y and Lots to Love Shop.

After the passing of her husband in 1999, she spent more time in Byram with her quadriplegic grandson, Steve, until he passed in 2002. In her later years she greatly enjoyed her great-grandchildren. She spent a couple of years in Natchez with her daughter Grace, and a couple of years in California with her grandson Gene. Her last years were spent in Bovina with her niece that she raised, Patricia, who was honored to care for the aunt who raised her.

Frances was preceded in death by her husband of 62 years, Armond E. Ford; a grandson Steve Kelly; her parents; and all of her siblings, four sisters and three brothers. She was the last surviving member of her Love family.

She is survived by a daughter, Grace Ford Dillon of Natchez; a son, William Gene Ford, Sr. (Gina) of Tallula Community; three grandchildren, Annette Ford Kindhart (Jim) of Vicksburg, Tammy Kelly Lawrence-Jones (Troy) of Vicksburg, and William Gene Ford, Jr. of Tallula Community; a niece she raised, Patricia Hurt Vinzant (Bill) of Bovina; six great-grandchildren, Christopher Kelly (Renee) of Sumrall, Erica McDaniel Trinchard (Christian) of Metairie, Louisiana; Garrett McDaniel of New Orleans; Hailey Wroten of Natchez; Heather Kindhart Brooks (Caleb) of Cumming, Georgia; and Alyssa Kindhart of Vicksburg; five great-great-grandchildren, Catherine Kelly, Jeanne Kelly, Claire Kelly, and Evie Grace Kelly, all of Sumrall; and Alexander Trinchard of Metairie, LA; many nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and cousins.

Funeral services will be held on Friday, February 2, 2024, at 2:00pm in the chapel of Glenwood Funeral Home in Vicksburg, MS with Rev. T.J. Tennison officiating. Interment will follow in Greenlawn Gardens Cemetery in Vicksburg; Visitation will be from 12:00 noon Friday until the hour of service.

Pallbearers are Gene Ford, Jr., Christopher Kelly, Garrett McDaniel, Jim Kindhart, Troy Jones, and Aerin Reihl. Honorary pallbearers are Joe W. Ford, Bill Vinzant, Bill Harden, Tommy Tucker, and Johnny Love.

The family would like to thank the staff of St. Joseph Hospice Care, especially Lena and Haley.

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