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Dr. Mabel Pittman Middleton, PhD

July 23, 1922 ~ June 12, 2022 (age 99)

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Dr. Mabel Hall Pittman Middleton died June 12, 2022 in hospice at Brandon Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. She was a beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, aunt, cousin and teacher to generations of children and families.

Dr. Middleton was born July 23, 1922, in Lexington, Virginia. To Annie Hance and Joseph Wheeler Hall. She attended Lylburn Downing School through its nine grades and completed high school at Christiansburg Institute, as salutatorian, in Cambria, Virginia. She received the A.B. degree in English from Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee; the Master of Arts degree in English from Mississippi College in Clinton, Mississippi and the Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois. She began her teaching career at Prentiss Institute in Prentiss, Mississippi.

On April 25, 1952, she married Freggie Paul Pittman, Sr. In 1956 they moved from Prentiss to Jackson. One year later, in 1957, the family joined Central Methodist Church, now known as Central United Methodist Church. She served as church historian and told the story of the church in a book entitled “Central United Methodist Church - The First One Hundred Years.”

Dr. Middleton taught English at Lanier High School from 1956 to 1970 and one semester at Wingfield High School. For more than five years, she was co-author of 9th grade literature textbooks for Scott, Foresman and Company of Glenview, Illinois. From 1970 to 1990, Dr. Middleton was employed at Jackson State University. There she taught literature and composition in the Thirteen-College Curriculum program for freshman and sophomores and undergraduate and graduate English courses. For 8 years Dr. Middleton served as Head of the English Department at Jackson State University. Prior to this, she served for nine years as administrative assistant to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. It was during her tenure at Jackson State University that she began her service as an outside evaluator for the Mississippi Humanities Council and a Proposal Evaluator for the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Dr. Middleton was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. Chapter of Beta Delta Omega.

Dr. Middleton retired from the English Department at Jackson State in 1987. From 1987 to 1990, she taught a writing course she created for cadets in the Military Science Department at Jackson State. From 1990 to 1994, she traveled back and forth from Jackson to her hometown in Lexington, Virginia, to care for two older sisters. During that period, she also served as Lay Member to the Annual Conference at Central.

Following retirement, Dr. Middleton learned to swim and had a lap pool built in her backyard. This was her sanctuary. She was also an avid gardener.

On May 16, 1998 she married James L Middleton, a retired Captain in the United States Army and a former U.S. Deputy Marshall.

Dr. Middleton’s retirement years were busy ones. In the year 2000, former Governor Ronnie Musgrove appointed her to the Board of the Mississippi Humanities Council where she served for 8 years. In addition, she served for 9 years on the Board of the Arts and Lecture Series at Millsaps College.

Dr. Middleton enjoyed traveling during her years of retirement. Trips took her to the Caribbean, Northern Europe, South Africa and China.

Dr. Middleton believed that giving help to others was one of her responsibilities and she donated regularly to the Salvation Army, the Bethlehem Center, St. Jude’s Hospital and many other organizations.

Dr. Middleton was preceded in death by her parents, her siblings, her son, Freggie Paul (Chipper) Pittman, Jr. and her beloved husbands: Freggie Paul Pittman, Sr. and James L. Middleton, Sr.

Dr. Middleton is cherished in memory by a loving family: a devoted daughter, Fragelia Paula Pittman Barksdale; a loyal son, Charles Philip Pittman; nephew, James Wade; three grandsons: Attorney Freggie Paul Pittman, III, Jonathan Wyatt Barksdale and Charles Philip Pittman, II; two granddaughters: Angela Pittman Rouege (Corey) and Dorleon Elizabeth Colbert Pittman. She leaves five great grandchildren: two great granddaughters, Asia Rouege and Claire Pittman; and three great grandsons, Corey Rouege, Charles Aiden Rouege and Maximillian Pittman. In addition, she leaves a beloved family of six stepchildren and their families: Leontyne Middleton, James L. Middleton, Jr. (Lynn), Georgia Redmond (Hal), Victor Middleton (Ruth), Eldridge Middleton (Valerie) and Guinevere Flowers.

Visitation Hours will be held Friday 06/17/22 from 12-6 p.m. with a wake from 6-7 p.m. at People's Funeral Home

Funeral Services will be held Saturday 06/18/22 at 11:00 a.m. at Central United Methodist located on 500 N. Farish St. 39202 and proceed to Garden Memorial Park located on 8001 Hwy 49 N. Jackson, MS 39209

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