Rosilee Fairman Obituary

May 17, 2014

Sunrise August 16, 1919 – Sunset May 9, 2014

Mrs. Rosilee Fairman was born August 16, 1919 in Lincoln County, Brookhaven, Mississippi to the late Ada Calcote Motley and John Motley. She accepted Christ at an early age and was a member of Macedonia Community Church where she attended until her death.

Rosilee was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Anthony Fairman; and two sons, Jimmie Lee Fairman and George Daniel Fairman.

She leaves to cherish her memory: four sons, Charles Minor (Judy) Fairman of Chicago, IL, Anthony Fairman, Jr. of Ontario, CA, Harvey (Emma) Fairman and Robert Lee Fairman both of Brookhaven, MS; six daughters, Elease (James) Gearring of Los Angeles, CA, Velma (Tony) McCrary of Villa Ridge, IL, Dorothy (John) Smith of South Holland, IL, Jewelene (Harvey) Waller of Palmdale, CA, Mable Fairman Jones and Rosie (Flower) Dodd both of Brookhaven, MS; one brother, Enoch Motley of Champaign, IL; two sisters-in-law, Marie Byrd of Urbana, IL and Daisy Ruth Motley of Lexington, MS; thirty-five grandchildren and forty-one great grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews and very good friends.

Rosilee’s daughters, Velma Fairman McCrary and Dorthy Fairman Smith are 1964 graduates of Eva H Harris High School.


Saturday, May 17, 2014
Siloam M. B. Church
Brookhaven, MS


Church Cemetery

Funeral arrangements entrusted to

Williams Mortuary
213 East Minnesota St
Brookhaven, MS 39601
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‘Reflections’ Story: Old photo brings Harris’s story to light

Published in The Daily Leader’s Reflections page, 2:25 pm Wednesday, March 26, 2014

A local legend appeared on The Daily Leader’s Reflections page March 6, and it did not go unnoticed. Many calls came in from readers about Eva Hall Harris, proudly stating they
knew the lady who served Lincoln County’s black schools for 37 years.

A reminder of Harris’ life can be found at the end Lewis Drive in Brookhaven, where at the end of a row of brick homes and manicured lawns, a once-busy school campus sits
abandoned. A gymnasium, classrooms and a cafeteria are filled with weeds and the shadows of a school was only open nine years when it was left empty after desegregation started in 1970.

During the 1960-61 school years, the Lincoln County Board of Education named a newly constructed high school the Eva Hall Harris School. On March 12, 1961, the school was
dedicated and she was named the school’s first principal where she served for four years.

Several of the callers remembered Harris as their teacher or principal. Annie Tillman of Brookhaven recalled the time that Harris served as the Lincoln County Jeanes agent.

The term, Jeannes agent, traces back to an endowment created in 1907 by philanthropist Anna T. Jeanes, according to The Encyclopedia of Alabama’s website. The $1 million fund
“was intended to assist community, county, and rural schools for African Americans in the southern United States,” the website stated.

Tillman is a retired English teacher and librarian. She has a long history in education, first in the all-black schools of Lincoln County before desegregation, including four years at Eva
Harris School – “though I arrived there the year after she retired.”

Tillman was the high school’s English teacher, and then afterwards she worked for Brookhaven Public Schools. She retired as an English teacher at the Alternative School. All
together, Tillman taught in Brookhaven for 32 years.

Tillman explained that Harris was the Jeanes supervisor in the 1950s. She remembers that Harris was highly respected in the black and white communities. The Jeanes supervisor or agent was the person who communicated between the black school teachers and the district’s white superintendent.

“She was the liaison between the black schools and the white superintendent,” Tillman said. “The black schools did not have a superintendent back then,” she explained. She said that the black schools did not have their own superintendent or school board; they were administered through the Jeanes Agent and the white superintendent for their school district.

Harris was the Jeanes agent in Jefferson and Lincoln counties for 16 years. She retired from the high school in 1965 and became active in the black community and taught summer school classes at Piney Woods Country Life School, Rankin County and at Alcorn.

In 1967, she was recognized for excellence in human relationships at the annual convention of the Federated Women at Piney Woods Country Life School.

Tillman remembers her coming through her school to counsel with teachers as the Jeanes agent when she was a student in the all-black schools.

“We went to a school where it was one teacher for kindergarten through eighth grade – there were only about two of us in each grade at that time,” Tillman said. “Her job was to help teachers do a better a job at keeping up with requirements,” she said, “and she was very helpful.”

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Florine Robinson Austin Obituary

F. Austin

In Loving Memory of Florine Robinson-Austin

September 25, 1945 – January 21, 2014

Florine Robinson-Austin was born on September 25, 1945 in Brookhaven, Mississippi to the late James and Rosetta Robinson. She accepted Christ at an early age and had a strong and solid relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. She was a member of Saint John’s Baptist Church in Los Angeles.

She attended and graduated from Eva H. Harris High School in 1964. After completing high school she moved to Los Angeles, California.

Shortly after arriving to Los Angeles she met Lenard Austin Sr., who preceded her in death. During their union four children were born Lenard Austin, Jr., Brenda L. Austin, Tammi L. Austin and Kammi L. Austin- Capers and Alan Austin (her stepson).

Florine, will be especially missed and remembered for her kind words. She believed that in life it cost nothing to smile, or to say hello. She believed that in life you say what you mean and mean what you say. She enjoyed reading and listening to music; she was always the life of the party. She loved spending her time going out on the weekends for lunch and shopping at some of her favorite stores with her family. Time would seem to fly by as she enjoyed playing a game of one on one dominos with her brother for hours at a time. What we will miss most of all is the unconditional love that she gave no matter who you were or what you did, or how much money that you had.

Florine was preceded in death by her Mother and Father (James and Rosetta Robinson) one Sister (Dorothy Helen) three Brothers (Joe Nathan, Melvin, and Charles Robinson) and one Grandson (Jasiri J. Austin) She is survived by: Two Sons: Alan Austin and Lenard Austin, Jr.; Three Daughters: Brenda Austin, Tammi Austin, Kammi Austin- Capers; One Son-in-Law: Brian R. Capers Five Grandchildren: DeAsia, Sydnii, Devin, Asjah, and Christian; Two Brothers: James Robinson (Adell) and Oran Robinson; One Aunt: Lillian Brown ; And a host of nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

Viewing Day, Date, & Time

Thursday, January 30, 2014 – 12:00 PM – 8:00 PM


Harrison-Ross Mortuary
View Park Chapel
4601 S. Crenshaw Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90043
Service Day, Date, & Time
Friday, January 31, 2014 at 10:00 AM


Harrison-Ross Mortuary
View Park Chapel
4601 S. Crenshaw Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90043


Park Lawn Memorial Park
6555 East Gage Avenue
City of Commerce, CA 90040
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2014 50th Year Class Reunion Information

We need a headcount for caterer, t-shirt and other vendors to prepare for our reunion. Therefore, please return completed registration and t-shirt order forms along with fees ASAP.

Please register! Even if you do not plan to attend the reunion, we’d love to have your information on file to keep in touch with you for future reunions.

Please watch your mailbox for our first mail out of Registration and T-shirt Order forms.

The following link takes you to the initial 2014 reunion letter:

The following link takes you to the 2014 Eva Harris 50th reunion registration package:

The following link takes you to the 2014 Eva Harris 50th reunion counts Spreadsheet:

The following link takes you to the 2014 Eva Harris Treasurer Report Spreadsheet:


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Mrs. Myrtis Richardson Obituary

Funeral services for Mrs. Myrtis Richardson of Bogue Chitto, MS was held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013. Mrs. Richardson, 97, died Sept. 13, 2013 at her home.

A floral arrangement was delivered 9/20/2013 for Mrs. Myrtis Richardson from “The Eva Harris class of 1964”. Mrs. Richardson is the mother of Ernestine Richardson Turner, a 1964 graduate of Eva H Harris High School in Brookhaven, MS .  

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2013 Lincoln County Schools 9th Reunion

2013 Lincoln County, MS Schools 9th Reunion Registration Forms may be found at the following link:


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MS. Costella Black Williams Obituary

Costella Black Williams

Funeral services for Costella Black Williams, of Brookhaven, are 11 a.m. on Wednesday, July 18, at Greater Mt. Olive M.B. Church, with burial in the church cemetery. R.E. Tyler Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Visitation is Tuesday from noon until 6 p.m. at the funeral home.

Mrs. Williams, 92, died July 11, 2012, at Silver Cross Home. She was born in Little Rock, Ark. on July 27, 1919, to Willard and Aldenia Smith Black.

She was a retired cook for Silver Cross Home in Brookhaven and a member of New Jerusalem M.B. Church.

Preceding her in death were her parents; husband, Othe Williams; brothers, Eulis, Marvin and Wilis Black and Ivey James Ford; and sister, Lucille Cooper.

Survivors are her sons, Edward Williams and wife, Sallie, the Rev. Jessie Williams and wife, Ella, of Springfield, Mass., O.C. Williams and wife, Sylvia, Leander Williams and Wendell Williams, of Brookhaven; daughters, Jeanette Dixon and husband, L.C., of Lansing, Mich., Patricia Hughes and husband, the Rev. William, Irma Smith, both of Brookhaven, and LeEdna Smith, of Meridian; and a host of grandchildren.

Ms. Costella Black Williams is the mother of the Rev. Jessie Williams of Springfield, MA. Jessie is a 1964 graduate of Eva H Harris High School, Brookhaven, MS.

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