Barbara Thomas Holmes, 83, died peacefully on April 24 at her home in Pascagoula. She was an English teacher, a journalist, and a volunteer.
Barbara was born in Kosciusko, MS, May 2, 1938 to Wade Lofton Thomas and Wardine Hudgins Thomas (Levy, Fortenberry). The family moved to Pascagoula in 1952 where she later graduated from Pascagoula High School. She then went on to graduate from Mississippi State University and received her Master’s degree from the University of South Alabama.
Barbara began her career as a journalist working as a reporter for the Jackson Daily News. She made history after moving to the Mississippi Press Register by becoming their first woman editor.
Barbara touched many lives during the 30 years she taught English, first at Colmer Middle School and then at Resurrection High School. At each school she was chairman of the English department. Her devotion to teaching made her a dedicated and innovative teacher who inspired her students to achieve.
When she retired from teaching, she volunteered with Catholic Social Services of Pascagoula. There she organized the volunteer group that assists the case managers in providing service to those in need. For 10 years, she coordinated and grew the diaper program and the food pantry. She was also a member of the Pascagoula Main Street Program where she was honored as Volunteer of the Year.
An active parishioner of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Pascagoula, she served as a lector and taught English as a second language classes.
She loved her yard and spent hours outside gardening.
Barbara’s rich and joyous life could not easily be contained in a brief summary, but she was known always to leave a wake following behind her. We were all so lucky to be along for the ride.
She leaves behind her beloved husband of 60 years, Roy Holmes; two sons, Russell Allen Holmes (Malinda), Gregory Thomas Holmes; Nine grandchildren: Megan McAlpin (Graham), Katie Sowers (Thomas), Kelton Holmes, Haven Holmes, Richard Holmes, Olivia Holmes, William Holmes, Thomas Holmes, and Ellie Holmes; five great grandchildren: Mary Juniper and Gideon Sowers, and Connor, Abigail, and Brooks McAlpin; and a daughter-in-love, Lisa Kossik (Andrew).
Visitation will be held at 10:00am on Monday, May 2, 2022, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Pascagoula, to be immediately followed by a Funeral Mass at 11:00am. Internment service to follow at Machpelah Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to the Pascagoula Office of Catholic Social Services. They may be mailed to 1930 Old Mobile Highway, Pascagoula, MS 39567. You may send condolences to her family or share a memory on the Tribute Wall.
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