Julia Caldwell - July 18, 1933 – Jan. 18, 2021
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Julia Caldwell, 87, of Gulfport, beloved mother of Robin Caldwell (Fitzgerald) Eyman, died of a heart attack on Monday, Jan. 18, 2021, just before her discharge from a local hospital.
She was eager to go home, where she lived with her daughter and family. but she had a better homecoming. She went to Heaven to spend eternity with Jesus, her two sons and other loved ones.
Known affectionately as “Mimi,” she was born in Coffee County, Ala., to Cecil and Ollie B “Mama Nick” Nicholson on July 18, 1933. She grew up on their farm and her family later moved to Brundidge, Ala., where her parents owned a grocery store.
She graduated a year early from Pike County High School in Brundidge, and worked as a teller at First National Bank of Brundidge.
She married Harold Caldwell of Clio, Ala., and later became the bookkeeper at Pike County High School in Brundidge. She moved to Eufaula, Ala., to be near family, retired as bookkeeper at Roller Tool & Die, and spent her latter years living with her daughter.
Mimi was a woman of faith who faced many dark times but remained positive, cheerful and witty. She was known for her sense of humor, making others laugh, lifting others up, and showing unconditional love.
She enjoyed gardening and tending to houseplants (which have taken over our home), playing video games, and connecting with others on social media. She also enjoyed talking about “the olden days.”
Mimi spent her latter years living with her daughter and being a blessing to others.
She was independent -- too independent! Many a time she was caught climbing a kitchen ladder while trying to be helpful. Even a robotic floor cleaner didn’t slow her down her; she followed it to make sure it did its job.
She rarely left home without wearing stylish clothes, her signature red wig, and lots of costume jewelry. (She loved wearing bling, saying she couldn’t afford jewelry when she was younger.)
She was a member of Sola Church on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and a former member of Christian Life Church in Eufaula. Ala., Mosaic Church Gulfport and Salem Baptist Church in Brundidge, Ala.
In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by sons Keith Caldwell of Houston, Tex., and Kim Caldwell, San Diego, Calif.; and sister Doris Thomas, Jack, Ala.
In addition to her only daughter, Robin, she is survived by grandchildren Courtney Rebstock, Ocean Springs; Kyle (Yan) Rebstock, Auburn, Ga.; Alicia Fitzgerald, Gulfport; and Michael (Kourtney) Rebstock, Grove, Okla.; her sister, Janice Drinkard, Eufaula, Ala.; and adopted son Arthur Villareal, Houston, Tex.
Other survivors include great-grandchildren Jacob Pemberton, Wyatt Rebstock, Sydney Rebstock, and Ethan Rebstock; son-in-law Rick Eyman; and the blended families of Rick’s children, Rick (Vicki) Eyman Jr., Mandeville, La. (and especially their young son Aiden); and Charles (Bethany) Eyman, New Orleans, La.
A celebration of life will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, January 24, at Sola Church (Youth for Christ building, 1501 24th Ave., Gulfport). Masks preferred, casual dress.
Since she died on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, she would be tickled to know that many who love her will remember her on that holiday celebrating peace, civil rights and social justice.
Special thanks to the ICU staff at Singing River Gulfport, where hospital staff took compassionate care of her and tried so hard to resuscitate her.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be given to Sola Church via the online giving link at solachurchgc.com, or Sola Church, c/o 2574 Bryn Mawr, Biloxi, Miss., 39531.
Southern Mississippi Funeral Services is serving the family.