Celia Jackson Welch, 96, died on February 14, 2011. Visitation will be on Wednesday, Feb. 16 in the Chapel of First United Methodist Church in Starkville from 4 to 6 p.m.; burial will be in the Enon Cemetery in Ackerman. A memorial service will be held at The Chapel of the Cross Episcopal Church in Madison, on Friday, Feb. 18 at 3 p.m.; visitation will follow after the service in the Parish Hall. The Reverend Prentiss Gordon, The Reverend Kay Murphree Mutert and The Reverend Alston Johnson will officiate.
Mrs. Welch was born in Choctaw County on Sept. 20, 1914 to Harry Edward Jackson and Lucy Madori Sharp. She married Lorenzo Dow Welch on Dec. 17, 1939. He preceded her in death in 1992.
In 1932 Mrs. Welch graduated with honors from Sturgis High School and from Bennett Academy (Wood Junior College) in 1934. Later she received her bachelor and masters degrees from Mississippi State University. During her 42 years of teaching in public schools in Mississippi, Mrs. Welch will be remembered for her efforts to help many students from Sturgis further their education at junior colleges and universities. Her students continued to remember her throughout all these years and provided assistance to her as needed. She worked with 4-H Clubs, Y-Teens, Junior and Senior Beta Clubs, and Library Clubs. She received statewide recognition for her work with Student Library Assistants of Mississippi.
She served on many local, county and state educational committees. As a member of the Mississippi Library Association Legislative Committee, she worked for completion of the public library in Sturgis, MS. She taught 31 of her 42 years at Sturgis High School. After her retirement in 1981, Mrs. Welch worked part-time for Independent Study and Continuing Education at Mississippi State University until 2007. She enjoyed gardening and taking care of her flowers and plants. She was well known for the beautiful azaleas in her yard during the spring season.
Survivors include her son, Lorenzo Dow Welch, Jr., his wife Cheryl, grandchildren Kathryn Anne Welch and Morgan Berry Welch of Madison, and her sister Helen Maxine Jackson Quinn of Madison.
She was preceded in death by her sisters Nellie Jackson, Ruth Jackson, Margaret Marie Jackson, Lula Mae Jackson Fondren and Sadie Lou Jackson Hunt.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorials be made to the Mississippi State University Foundation, Box 6149, Mississippi State, MS 39762 for a scholarship to a College of Education student.
You may go online and sign the guest register at http://www.welchfuneralhomesinc.com.