Obit: Martha Cummings Palmer Mitchell - Madison Parish, LA Submitted by:  Richard P. Sevier February 2, 2020

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Martha Cummings Palmer Mitchell Madison Parish, LA

From Shreveport Times February 2, 2020


A funeral Mass will be celebrated for Martha Cummings Palmer Mitchell at 1:00 pm on Wednesday, February 5, 2020, at The Cathedral of St. John Berchmans. Officiating will be Father Duane Trombetta with concelebrants, Fr. Karl Daigle, Fr. Joseph Howard, Father Bob Monagle, and Deacon John Basco. Mrs. Mitchell's grandsons will serve as pallbearers. Visitation will be held from 5:00 until 7:00 pm on Tuesday, February 4, at Osborn Funeral Home, with a Rosary following at 7:00 pm.

After a recent illness, our lovely "Meeme" died peacefully on Thursday, January 30, 2020. She is survived by her devoted family in whom she delighted.

Born on March 7, 1926, at their family home in Tallulah, Louisiana, Martha's father—the town's only doctor—delivered her into this world. "Doc" and his wife, Mattie adored their baby girl and gave her love and a firm foundation. She was an honor student throughout her school years and completed her degree in Elementary Education at LSU in Baton Rouge. There she was a member of Chi Omega women's fraternity and rushed future husband, Bob for Kappa Alpha Order. He already had his eye on her, and somehow "forgot" to say that he was a KA visiting from Centenary. So delighted by her presence, Bob encouraged her attentions and that is how the Mitchell clan began.

Martha married her KA within the year and always said she fell in love with him because he was the smartest young man she had ever met, not to mention his good looks, charm, and tremendous sense of humor! Until his death parted them, Martha and Bob were a devoted couple for over 62 years, parenting and loving six children, and surviving the loss of one, their young son, Robert Preston Mitchell, through their Catholic faith and stalwart strength as a couple. Meeme was also predeceased by her parents, Dr. and Mrs. Alonzo Trent Palmer; sister, Ann Palmer Willett; and brother, Alonzo Trent Palmer, Jr.

In her early years of marriage, Martha taught elementary school in Brusly, Louisiana and then Werner Park in Shreveport, Louisiana, and as the family grew, she ventured out again to teach at A. C. Steere and Ingersoll Elementary.

With a deep spirituality, shown by her love of daily Mass and Catholic devotions, Meeme had a glow and a goodness that was always manifest in her interactions with others. For over 20 years she taught 6th grade at St. John Berchmans Catholic School, where she was loved by her students and was remembered as being a shining example of a caring, creative and very holy Catholic educator. She also taught religion classes at Holy Trinity Catholic Church. She had a unique ability to advise and counsel wisely, while conveying an indefatigable sense of humor, optimism and faith. Family and friends shared their profound love and affection for her.

Although Meeme slowed down some in her 90's, she always had numerous interests. She was a very active member of Colonial Dames and the Pelican Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. An accomplished artist, her paintings and sculptures were both whimsical and inspirational. She was at ease playing at the bridge table, fishing on Lake Bistineau, working in her flower beds, watching her Saints, Tigers, and her favorite teams: those on which her children and grandchildren competed from school days through college. She could also cook just about anything anyone would want…especially her shrimp Creole!

Grieving their loss of this magnificent lady are her devoted children, Francis Lane Mitchell, Kathleen "Tookie" Mitchell Barr (Baker), Paul David Mitchell (Lisa), Martha Lillian "Millie" Mitchell, and Patrick Thomas Mitchell (Cathy); and twelve grandchildren cherish memories of their dear Meeme, Michael Lane Mitchell (Valeria), Carter Patrick Mitchell, John Baker Barr III (Kathleen), Erin Barr Christensen (Eric), Brian Timothy Barr (Kim), Lisa Mitchell Berry (Mike), Paul David Mitchell II, Robert Fletcher Thomas, Graham Patrick Thomas, Trent Palmer Thomas, Emily Mitchell Holleman (John Courtney), and Kelly Patrick Mitchell. Meeme was also the very proud great-grandmother of 13 precious children as well as a host of nieces and nephews to carry on her spirit and joy of life.

Special thanks to St. Joseph Hospice, The Carpenter House; her loyal helper and driver, Robert Burns; and to her devoted caregivers, Kim Smith, Lynne Frey, Evelyn Delk, and Shirley Carter, C.N.A. Martha's family also cherishes the friendship of Jean Hundley, who joyfully took her to daily Mass and brought her Holy Communion when she could no longer go to church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. John Berchmans Catholic School, Loyola College Prep, The Cathedral of St. John Berchmans or St. Joseph Catholic Church, or to charity of donor's choice.