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Ms. Elizabeth Ann (nee: Simmons) Gregory was born on November 8, 1932 in Ripley, Mississippi to the late Mr. George Simmons and Mrs. Johnnie B. Simmons. She departed this life on May 25, 2017 in the comforts of her own home in Racine, WI, surrounded by the love of her family.
Elizabeth met Walter High in 1949 and to this union five children were born, Barbara, Judy, Jackie, Kenny and Patsy. She later went on to wed Mr. Elmo Gregory (Pete) on August 31, 1970 and was blessed with what some refer to as a step-daughter, but she never used that term as Joanne became her daughter that she raised with love and care as her own. It was Elmo that gave Elizabeth the nickname “Libby Lop” that you will find her family and friends calling her to this day.
She confessed her faith in Jehovah God and was baptized as a Jehovah’s Witness in 1958. Before her health declined, she loved to share the “good news” with people by actively being involved in field service, distributing literature and conversing with them. Even while out shopping she would stop people in parking lots and share the “good news.” She was the rock of her family and passed on her faith to many family members, most notably many of her children and grandchildren. She would always take her grandchildren out in field service, to book studies, and the kingdom hall.
She unconditionally loved her family beyond measures. She was so generous in her helping hand and giving. As a teen she helped her mother to take care of her twin sisters. Along with the help of her sister, Deborah, they would care for the twins so much that their mother referred to one twin as “Lib baby” and the other as “Snoop baby.” Even after leaving home she would be sure to send her sisters clothing. Her loving and nurturing ways extended to the unconditional loving and caring of her own children and grandchildren. To her grandchildren she became so much more than a grandmother, she truly was another mother. She helped to care for them when needed and was just always there.
Elizabeth loved flowers and gardening which she referred to as her therapy. She would spend hours on top of hours planting and grooming. When the weather got warm, you could count on seeing vivid colors of flowers in her yard. She also had a passion for cooking and baking. She was master of these crafts and became well known for her cakes. No family function was complete without her delicious chocolate cake with a pink center, caramel, coconut, and german chocolate. There was always a request for her flavorful, tender collard greens, perfect syrupy sweet potato yams, and her mouthwatering, sweet and buttery fried corn. Her sisters are left with sweet and profound memories of fried pies she use to make for them. Many remember how she loved to dance. She even had a signature move that she would do at most family events.
She leaves a legacy of cherished memories to her five children, Barbara (Howard) McCord, Judy (Hamin) Phillips, Patsy G. Simmons, Kenny Simmons, and Joanne Love, all of Racine, WI; sixteen grandchildren, Shawnette (Gilberto) Benitez, Laurie (Bobby) Morgan, Rasheik Simmons, Cornelius (Heidi) Simmons, Hamin Phillips, Alpheius Swanks, Micah (Tonya) McCord, Nadirah Muhammad, Lateefah (David) Rabideau, Melodie (Juan) Cruz, Walter Slack, Raushanah (Ricky) Franklin, Latasha Knight, Romeo Slack, Briana (Kenny) Flannigan, and Kenny Simmons Jr; thirty eight great grandchildren and one great-great- grandchild; four sisters, Mary Weatherspoon, Lorene Story, Orine Story, and Vallie (Walter) Rogers, all of Racine, WI; two brothers, William (Ruth) Simmons and John Franklin (May) Simmons, all of Racine, WI; two aunts, Betty Simmons and Annette McDonald, of Ripley, MS; two special nieces, Martha and Mary Selmon of Racine, WI who were more like sister’s to her; as well as a host of nieces and nephews, other relatives and friends.
She is preceded in death by her father, George Simmons; mother, Johnnie Simmons; daughter, Jacqueline Slack; brother, Robert Simmons; sisters, Deborah Cobb and Ruth Simmons; uncles, Joe and Troy Simmons, and her brothers in law, Oliver Story, William Story, Bud Cobb and Elize Weatherspoon.
A service will be held in her memory on Saturday, June 3, 2017, 12:00pm in Draeger-Langendorf Funeral Home. Visitation will be at the Funeral Home from 10:00am until the time of service. Interment will take place at West Lawn Memorial Park. Please revisit the funeral home website on a later date for her full obituary.