Mary Ella Sims Blackiston, 92, died January 22, 2013 at Missouri Southern Healthcare in Dexter, Mo. Mrs. Blackiston, formerly of Cape Girardeau, Mo., had been a resident of Malden Nursing and Rehab for the last four years.
Born March 1, 1920, in Ouachita Parish, La., to the late John Steven and Clara Belle Kennedy Sims. She earned a bachelor's degree in home economics from Louisiana Tech, a master's degree in education from Northeast Louisiana State, and Ph.D in coursework at Southern Illinois University. She retired in 1982 as an Emeritus Professor at Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau, Mo. where she served as the first director of the Child Studies Center and was the Vocational Economics Education Teacher Educator.
Active in politics, Mrs. Blackiston attended the 2000 Democratic National Convention in San Diego, Calif. as the oldest voting Missouri Delegate. She was a member of Pi Lambda Theta, Kappa Kappa Lota, Kappa Delta Pi, Delta Kappa Gamma, Kappa Omicron Phi, The American Home Economic Association, American Vocational Association, and a lifetime member of the National Education Association. An avid gardener, Mrs. Blackiston was a member of the American Iris Society. She was a Baptist.
In 1944 she married John Fillmore Blackiston, Sr. in Ouachita Parish, La. He preceded her in death on September 26, 1976.
Survivors Include: a daughter and son-in-law, Annabel and Nick Haskett of Port St. Lucie, Fla.; a son and daughter-in-law, John Fillmore Blackiston, Jr. and Pamela of Malden, Mo.; two grandsons, John August Pollack of Chicago, Ill. and Steven William Blackiston of Malden, Mo.
Preceding her in death was one sister Anna Alva Younger, and three brothers, James Steven Sims, Thomas Fred Sims, and Robert Lee Sims.
Funeral Services were conducted January 24, 2013 at the Bradshaw Chapel in Malden with Mr. Mark Pickard officiating.
Burial was in West Monroe, La. at Kilpatrick Serenity Gardens.
Memorial contributions may be sent to the First Southern Baptist Church in Malden, the Malden Public Library, or the Alzheimer's Association.