Mt. Vernon Register-News

December 28, 2012

Mary Belle Watkins


MT. VERNON — — Mrs. Mary Belle Watkins, 93, of Jonesboro, died at 12:15 a.m. Monday, Dec. 24, 2012, in the Union County Long Term Care Facility in Anna.

She was born Sept. 10, 1919, in Dongola, the daughter of Earl and Elsie Hinkle Beggs. She married James O. Watkins on March 26, 1938, in Jackson, Mo.; they were blessed with 70 years of marriage and were honored by their three children with a 70th wedding anniversary celebration in March of 2008. James preceded Mary Belle in death on Sept. 17, 2008.

Mary Belle is survived by her children, Carmella (John) Kiefer of Belle Rive, Jimmy (Nancy) Watkins of Jonesboro and Carolyn (Alan) Brimm of Anna; six grandchildren, Anna (Russell) Jukes and Robert (Monika) Kiefer, all of Belle Rive, Christina (Mark) Epperson of McLeansboro, Brad (Jamie) Watkins and Bryan Watkins, all of Jonesboro and Dr. Jamie Brimm of Tampa, Fla.; thirteen great-grandchildren; and other relatives and many friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, James O. Watkins; one sister, Dorothy Smoot; infant bother, Lester Earl Beggs; and one grandchild, Jeffrey Alan Watkins.

Mary Belle was a devoted wife and mother and was a homemaker until her children were out of school. She worked at the Florshiem Shoe Factory for fourteen years. She was a great cook; her two special requests at all holiday meals were her red velvet and blackberry cakes. She enjoyed sewing and made quilts for all of her children and grandchildren and crocheted afghans for family and friends.

Mary Belle was a member of the Church of Christ in Anna.     

Funeral services for Mrs. Mary Belle Watkins were held at 1 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012, at the Rendleman & Hileman Funeral Home in Jonesboro with the Rev. Paul Sadler officiating. Interment will be in the Jonesboro Cemetery. Friends could call after 11 a.m. and until the service hour at 1 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012, at the Rendleman & Hileman Funeral Home in Jonesboro.

Memorials may be made to the Union County Long Term Care Activity Fund. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home.

To view this obituary or leave an online condolence for the family visit    

Rendleman & Hileman Funeral Home in Jonesboro is in charge of arrangements.