Obituaries » Verna Grace Burkett Owens
December 6, 1927 - August 11, 2017
Verna Grace Burkett Owens was born in her parents’ home, in a rural part of Ringgold, Louisiana, on December 6, 1927, and went to be with the Lord on August 11, 2017. She grew up just a couple miles from where she was born, with her sister and parents.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Randell Owens, her daughter, Dianne Owens Meshell, her sisters, Alice Burkett Hemperley and an unnamed infant, her parents, Arthur (A.H.) and Viola Burkett, and an infant great-grandson, Dexter Owens.
Left to cherish her memory are five children, Charles Owens and wife, Kaye, of Bossier City, Louisiana, Kathy Rushworth and husband, Gary, of Bossier City, Louisiana, Donna Kay Lenard, and husband, Kent, of McLeod, Texas, Ronnie Owens and wife, Diana, of Benton, Louisiana, and Mark Owens and wife, Tammy, of Doyline, Louisiana, son-in-law, Kenneth Meshell, of Elm Grove, Louisiana, fourteen grandchildren, Ken Meshell (Tisha), Stacey Meshell, Lane Owens (Sharon), Chris Owens (Erin), Kimberly Williamson (Jesse), Gary Rushworth, Jr. (Stephanie), Bobby Rushworth, Stephen Lenard (Christy), Jonathan Lenard (Rachel), Joey Lenard, Catie Owens, Emily Owens, Kendall Owens, and Coy Owens, eleven great-grandchildren, and five great-great grandchildren.
At age eleven, Verna Grace accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior, a faith she lived throughout her life. After graduation from Ringgold High School in 1945, she attended business school in Bossier and then worked for an insurance company in downtown Shreveport. She married Randell in 1948 and they had six children, over a period of twenty-four years. In 1955, they moved back to Ringgold to be near her widowed mother and built a house next door, where she remained for more than sixty years.
Verna Grace was a devoted wife and mother, caring for her household, which involved her husband and children, various animals, a vegetable garden, and lots of cooking. Her house was often filled with family, hunters, and sometimes “strays” who needed a place to stay for a while. Verna Grace liked to mow her yard, tend her flowers, cook, sew, and spend time with family. She was known most for her kind heart, her smile, and her great cooking. She was rich in the things that money cannot buy, and passed those values along to her children.
Widowed at age 49, Verna Grace continued to care for her children and mother, and many of her neighbors and friends. Through some difficult times and her own health problems, Verna Grace’s smile remained, as did her desire to live for the Lord and do what she could to help others, for as long as she could. She was an active member of Springhill Baptist Church, involved in several ministries including teaching children in Sunday School and VBS. In 2014, she left her home in Ringgold to become part of her assisted living family, at what is now Brookdale Shreveport. Christmas 2016 brought a heart attack and a move to The Glen for skilled nursing care, where she resided for the rest of her life.
The family expresses heartfelt appreciation to the staff and friends who helped to truly make Brookdale Shreveport Verna Grace’s new home for as long as she was able to stay there, and to the nurses and staff who lovingly cared for her at The Glen, along with those at LifePath Hospice, who helped to care for her during her final days. The family would also like to thank her cardiologist, Dr. Iqbal Singh, for fourteen years of excellent care and genuine concern.
Visitation will be held on Sunday, August 13, 2017 from 4-7 p.m. at Rose-Neath Marshall St. Funeral service for Verna Grace will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, August 14, 2017, at Rose-Neath Marshall St. Chapel, 1815 Marshall Street, Shreveport, LA 71101. Officiating will be Rev. Olan McLaren, Rev. Eric Hodge, and Rev. Marvin Leleux. Interment will be at Rocky Mount Cemetery, 1309 Par Road 405, Ringgold, Louisiana. Honoring Verna Grace as pallbearers will be her grandsons.
The family suggests that memorials be made to Rocky Mount Cemetery Association, P.O. Box 8543, Bossier City, LA 71113-8543.