Dr. J.R. Todd Jr.

Published 12:01 am Thursday, September 5, 2019

NATCHEZ— Services for J.R. Todd Jr., M.D., 77, of Natchez, who died Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019, at Merit Health Natchez, will be 11 a.m. Saturday at the Natchez City Auditorium with the Rev. Birdon Mitchell Jr. officiating.

Burial will follow at the Natchez City Cemetery under the direction of Tyler Funeral Home Inc., in Brookhaven.       

Visitation will be from 10 a.m. until service time Saturday at the auditorium.

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James Roy Todd Jr. was born in Natchez, the son of James Roy Todd Sr. and Maggie Donnan Todd. He was reared in Poplarville and Collins, where his father served as principal and his mother taught English. Poplarville was the Mississippi ancestral home of the Todd family, headed by Professor Alfred Alvin Todd and his beloved wife, Millie, who personally founded their own log-cabin-style school which was the first formal institution of learning of African-Americans in Pearl River County.

James Jr. graduated from Carver Central High School in Collins. He was valedictorian of his class. He graduated from Tougaloo College in 1963, where he earned a bachelor of science degree in biochemistry. In 1967, he received a doctor of medicine from Meharry Medical College. He continued his medical education with a one year rotating internship and a four-year surgical residency at the George W. Hubbard Hospital of Meharry Medical College, Nashville, Tennessee. Dr. Todd was a fourth-generation college graduate of the Todd family.

He served as an instructor of surgery at Meharry Medical College and Director/Hospital Administrator of the Delta Health Center and Taborian Hospital-Mound Bayou. His continuing education led him to study at such programs as Cook County School of Graduate Medicine, Detroit Medical Center, Harvard, the University of Mississippi Medical Center and most recently, University of Tennessee.

Dr. Todd was a highly recognized pioneer in the field of health care for the indigent of the Mississippi Delta. In many instances, he has single-handedly stepped forward to be an advocate for equal opportunity and access to quality health care and social reform. He gained the admiration of government leaders and politicians on the local, state and national levels.

He was a life-member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. (an organizer and charter member of Rho Epsilon Lambda Chapter) and a life member of the N.A.A.C.P. His professional memberships were with the National Medical Association, Mississippi Medical Association and the Homochitto Valley Medical Society. Dr. Todd formerly served on the Board of Directors of United Mississippi Bank and the Trustee Board of Zion Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Natchez.

Dr. J.R. Todd Jr. practiced medicine in Natchez since 1976, and retired in 2015. His contributions to health care, history, neighborhood rehabilitation and preservation, employment and the general welfare of Natchez and the Miss-Lou area make him one Natchez’ most beloved and appreciated citizens.

Dr. Todd was married to the late Dr. Fredericka Cain Todd.

Survivors include two sons, Christopher and Frederick David; two grandchildren, Kyaira Monique Todd of Natchez and Frederick Daniel Todd of Atlanta; and one great-granddaughter, Kylee Raye Smith of Natchez.