Mary Ella McDougal Henley was the youngest and last surviving of the five children born to the late Daniel McDougal and Maria Armstrong McDougal. Born December 1, 1940 in Holmes County, Mississippi, Mary departed this life at her home with family by her side on July 30, 2021.
She accepted Christ as her personal Savior at an early age. She lived a life reflecting her faith in Him. During her many years of Christian service, she was a faithful member of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Thornton, Mississippi; and Zion Travelers M. B. Church, Morning Star M. B. Church, and Fresh Start Christian Church in Jackson, Mississippi.
She was educated in the public schools of Holmes County, Mississippi. She graduated from Montgomery High School, Louise, Mississippi in 1959.
She was married to James L. Henley, Sr. (deceased) for 54 years. Three children were born to this union: James, Jr. (Jackson, Mississippi), Daniel (Memphis, Tennessee), and Karen (Jackson, Mississippi).
Her employment included Mississippi Baptist Hospital, MPI Industries, Inc., and Morrison Cafeteria. She also was a business owner having operated a fish market for several years. Eclipsing any business endeavor, her greatest service and accomplishments were the time and devotion she selfishly gave to her family. On more than a few occasions, she opened her heart and home to care for sick and ill family members. She could quite often be found visiting friends and loved ones in nursing homes. Her assistance in the rearing of her grandchildren is legendary.
She was preceded in death by her parents; brothers: Charlie McDougal, Carl McDougal, and Jimmie Lee McDougal; and sister: Mattie Swan.
She is survived by her children: James L. Henley, Jr. (Vivian), Daniel Henley (D’Juanna), and Karen Barber (Michael); grandchildren: Shondra Butler, Aftan Mitchell, Dierdre Wood, Jordan Henley, Danielle Henley, Sydney Ricks, Joel Henley, Daniel P. Henley, Leigh Barber, and Michael Barber; two great-granddaughters; and a host of loving nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. (Nieces/nephews who really grew up as a second set of children – Albertine, Jimmy Jr. (deceased), Melinda, Julius, Mariah, and Marshall).
A Celebration Service was held Saturday, Aug. 7th at Fresh Start Christian Church, 5210 Manhattan Road, Jackson. Lakeover Memorial Funeral Home handled arrangements.