Funeral services for Tommie Jean Sumrall Bridges were held Nov. 21, 2023, at Old Hebron Baptist Church, with interment following in the Whitesand Cemetery. Rev. Micah Rutland officiated, assisted by Rev. Terry Phillips and Rev. Michael Giles. Mrs. Bridges, 88, entered into the eternal rest of her Lord Nov. 18 at the Merit Health-Wesley Medical Center in Hattiesburg. Saulters Moore Funeral Home was entrusted with arrangements.
Mrs. Bridges was carried to her final rest by her grandsons and nephews; they include Thomas Bridges, Carter Bridges, Phillip Bridges, Scott Taylor, Danny Newsom, and Terry Newsom.
Tommie was born on July 19, 1935 in Covington County to Tom and Alma Kennedy Sumrall. As a young girl, the family moved to Prentiss, where they owned and operated a dry cleaners, as well as a cafe. Tommie was a graduate of Prentiss High School, where she played basketball.
Tommie was a source of unwavering love and devotion to her family. Her grandchildren hold cherished memories of gathering at their Mawmaw’s home after church for heartwarming dinners. It was during these meals that the warmth of family bonds grew stronger. In addition, Tommie looked forward to every Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Easter when the entire family would come together to celebrate. The kitchen would overflow with tantalizing aromas as she prepared a bounty of her Southern favorites. Her sausage balls were legendary among friends and neighbors, while her “Tom Selleck” Cake and Green Punch were anticipated treats at every gathering. Tommie’s cooking was not only manifestation of her love, but also nourishment for the soul. Her home was always filled with affection and laughter; the walls resonating with joyous echoes as those dear to her heart shared stories and created priceless memories together.
Beyond her role as a homemaker, Tommie also enjoyed working in her yard and growing flowers. She also had a talent for crafting. During the Christmas season, she gathered her grandchildren around her table to make ornaments. These handmade ornaments became symbols of love and tradition; each one carrying precious memories that will be cherished forever. Additionally, Tommie gifted each grandchild with special handmade items like crocheted blankets, sewn treasures, and beautiful aprons. These gifts serve as tangible reminders of the love and care she poured into every stitch.
Mrs. Bridges confessed a hope in Christ at an early age and joined the Old Hebron Baptist Church in 1953, where she served her Lord for many years. During her years at Old Hebron, she not only served as a Sunday School teacher and Vacation Bible School teacher, but also served as a church hostess.
In addition to her parents, Mrs. Bridges was preceded in death by her husband, Coy Glenn Bridges; her daughter, Bonnie Bridges; her sons, Jerry Bridges and Joey Bridges; as well as a sister, Jeanette Holbrook.
Her memory will forever be cherished by her grandchildren, Ashley Bridges (Scott) Taylor, of Madison; Phillip (Becca) Bridges, of Mendenhall; Thomas (Shelby) Bridges, of New Hebron; Carter Bridges, also of New Hebron; her great-grandchildren, Knox Taylor, Lilly Scott Taylor, Blakeney Bridges, Chandler Bridges; and a brother, Bud (Gloria) Bridges, of Hattiesburg.