Mary “Jan” Simms Eldridge – Obituary

By  | July 2, 2018 | Filed under: Higgins Funeral Home, Obituaries

Graveside memorial service for Mary “Jan” Simms Eldridge, age 62, of Fayetteville, Georgia, will be conducted at 10 AM on Saturday, July 7, 2018 at Higgins Cedar Hills Memorial Gardens (23 Memory Lane, Fayetteville, TN 37334). Mrs. Eldridge joined the saints of her family on January 16, 2018, in Atlanta, Georgia, succumbing to cancer related respiratory failure. She was surrounded by her sons, daughter-in-law and husband.

Jan was born on September 30, 1955, to Lester and Faye (Moore) Simms, in Fayetteville, Tennessee. Married to James G. Eldridge of West Warwick, Rhode Island, in Atlanta, Georgia, on January 22, 1983. Their thirty-five-year relationship originated out of their mutual professions as federal officers at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Jan initially attended Mississippi College for Women on scholarship, completing her under graduate degree at Memphis University. She began her employment in Atlanta, Georgia in 1980, as an immigration officer with the U.S. Department of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service, rising to the position of Assistant Port Director. With the reorganization of federal service after 09/11, Jan served under Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection (CBP), as a Supervisory Mission Support Manager, and rising to the rank of Deputy Assistant Director Mission Support. She was responsible for many of the federal infrastructure improvement of CBP facilities in major ports of entry up and down the Southeast such as Norfolk, Charleston, Charlotte, Atlanta and Savannah. She was an accomplished musician serving as a backup organist for many years at her local church.

She was survived by her husband, James Eldridge of Fayetteville, GA; son Benjamin Eldridge and wife Dr. Elizabeth Dehaven West Eldridge of Gear, South Carolina; son Samuel Eldridge of Fayetteville, Georgia; brothers, Wayne (Shelia) Simms of Fayetteville and Lionel (Pam) Simms of Baton Rouge, LA; nephew, Heath Simms of Fayetteville; nieces, April Sims of Fayetteville, Jennifer (Shane) Chambers of Beaumont, TX, Lindsey (John) Gilliam of Baton Rouge, LA, and Meghan (Seth) Chenevert of Baton Rouge, LA; and several great-nieces, great-nephews, and cousins. Preceding Jan in death were her father, Lester Simms and mother Faye (Moore) Simms of Fayetteville, Tennessee.

Please in lieu of flowers, make donation to Matthew 28, (www.matthew28.org) (Donation checks can be mailed to our treasurer at 222 Vega Rd. Meansville, GA 30256.

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