Billie Rustin Adkins Laird

Published 10:49 am Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Sept. 17, 1937 – July 2, 2022

NATCHEZ – Billie Rustin Adkins Laird, 84, of Natchez, MS, passed away peacefully in her home, surrounded by loving family, on the morning of Saturday, July 2, 2022. Billie was a valued and long-standing member of the Natchez community, Trinity Episcopal Church, Pilgrimage Garden Club and Daughters of the American Revolution.

Billie was born Sept. 17, 1937, in Jones County, MS, first born daughter of Bilbo and Ada Belle Blu Rustin. She is preceded in death by her parents, Bilbo and Ada Belle; husband, Roy Eddie Adkins in 1973; husband, Charles M. Laird in 2012 and daughter, Sherie Adkins Haygood in 2008.

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She graduated from Sandersville High School at 16 years old and began working for Blue Cross Blue Shield as a computer programmer for the beginning stages of their database development. She became a Licensed Funeral Director in the State of Mississippi and helped in the success of both Adkins Funeral Home and Laird Funeral Home, founded by both her late husbands, Eddie and Charles, respectively. She was also a key contributor in Family Security Life Insurance. She was a member of the Mississippi Funeral Directors Association and attended conventions annually.

Billie loved the Lord and spending time with her family. She was a devoted mother, sister, aunt, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend. She was always loyal and saw the good in everyone. She also enjoyed traveling abroad with husband, Charles, having fond memories of an African safari, European Cathedrals and all the crystal in Italy. She was a true Southern Belle that loved decorating for Great Mississippi River Balloon Races, Fourth of July at Lake St. John and Christmas for hosting beloved family and friends.

Billie is survived by her children: Anthony “Tony” Edward Adkins and wife, Kay of Flower Mound, TX; Dicky Laird and wife, Diane, Gene Laird and wife, Laura, all of Natchez, MS; Jenny Lynn Petty and husband, Benny of Hattiesburg; grandchildren, Suzanne Adkins, Hunter Adkins and wife, Mary Ashley, Rian Johnson and wife, Chelsea, Regan Stephenson and husband, Jordan, Ryan and Lori Haygood, Isaac and Hope Haygood, Dixon Laird, Abby and Brittany Laird, Peyton McNair and husband, Jason, Sara Smith and husband, Josh, James Petty and wife, Katie; six siblings, Barbara (Spurgeon) Smith of Jackson, TN, Nancy (Elwood) Litzkow of Branson, MO, Bill Edwin (Janet) Rustin of Laurel, MS, Sandra Pospical of Huntsville, AL, Gregory Dunn Rustin (Teodie) of Laurel, MS, LaDonna (Mickey) Riles of Ridgeland, MS, sixteen nieces and nephews and many great-grandchildren.

Please join Father Len Ritter on Friday, July 8, 2022, at 11 a.m. in Trinity Episcopal Church, 305 S. Commerce St. Burial will follow at Natchez City Cemetery where she will be next to Eddie, Charles and Sherie. Visitation will also be at Trinity preceding the service, from 9 until 11 a.m., along with open Reception after graveside services. Stringer Family Funeral Services in Crystal Springs is handling arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to her favorite charity, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, stjude.org, Trinity Episcopal Church or your favorite charity. Online condolences may be made at stringerfuneral.com.

The family would like to thank her longtime family friend and caretaker Regina Reed.