Mara Gusteen Roland Harris of Tifton died Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013 at her home after an extended illness. Funeral services will be held at 3 p.m. today in the chapel of Albritton-Beaumont Funeral Directors with Dr. W. Ches Smith III, Dr. W. Wayne Roe and the Rev. Paul T. Thomas officiating. Burial will follow at Oakridge Cemetery. Grandsons and nephews will serve as pallbearers. The family will receive friends from 1 to 2:30 p.m. today at Albritton-Beaumont Funeral Directors.
Mrs. Harris was born in Tift County on Feb. 27, 1921 to Frances Elizabeth Hancock Roland and Gus Roland. After attending public schools in Tifton, she attended Georgia-Alabama Business College in Macon. She was employed by Farmers Home Administration and Soil Conservation Service as a secretary, retiring after 30 years of service. Mrs. Harris was a member of the Tiftarea Chapter of the National Secretaries Association. She was certified as a professional secretary in 1974 by the Institute for Certifying Secretaries. She was a faithful member of Tifton’s First Baptist Church all her adult life. She was a member of the Serenity Sunday school class. Her church was very important to her and she attended faithfully until her health made it impossible to do so. Mrs. Harris was also a member of the Wiregrass Quilt Guild. She was an accomplished seamstress, and she displayed many of her quilts at the Georgia’s Museums of Agriculture and Historic Village (Agrirama) in Tifton. She was also a Red Cross blood donor and was a member of the Gallon Club. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Elmo Harris; a brother, Ralston; and two sisters, Marcelyn Bohannon and Roselyn Walker.
Survivors include three daughters, Teena Ann Harris Henderson (Dr. Hal Henderson) of Tifton, Betsy Harris Williams (Ben) of Gainesville and Paige Harris Ferrell (David) of Waycross; seven grandchildren, Hank Henderson (Carrie), MaraDare Day (Cal), Rebecca Shanlever (Mike), Richard Williams (Katie), Sarah Catherine Williams, Adam Ferrell (April) and Ross Ferrell (Carmen); eight great-grandchildren, Hain Henderson, Ben Henderson, James Williams, Charlie Williams, Lee Shanlever, Jackson Ferrell, Grayson Anne Day and Anna Catherine Day; two sisters-in-law, Frances Harris and Helen Kockritz; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorial donations may be made to the Forward in Faith Building Fund of Tifton’s First Baptist Church, 404 Love Ave., Tifton, Ga. 31794. Flowers are also accepted. Special thanks go to the staff of Cypress Pond Assisted Living at Home and Bethany Hospice of Valdosta.
You may sign the guest registry at www.albritton-beaumontfuneralhome.com.
Albritton-Beaumont Funeral Directors is in charge of arrangements.