|Birth: ||Oct. 20, 1925|
|Death: ||Jan. 15, 2008|
Gloria White Dudding, 82, a McComb native [resident], avid Mississippi theater supporter and community activist, died Jan. 15, 2008, at Heritage House Nursing Center in Vicksburg. Services are 9 a.m. Friday at Church of the Mediator in McComb with an 11 a.m. gathering at the parish hall. The Rev. David Lemburg will officiate. Burial will be in Hollywood Cemetery under direction of Hartman Funeral Home of McComb.
Mrs. Dudding was born Oct. 20, 1925, in Clarksdale to William Lawrence and Tycelia Johnson White.
She was an enthusiastic supporter of the arts and participated in community theater as an actor and director throughout Mississippi for almost four decades. She was the organizing president of the Pike County Little Theatre in McComb and the Clinton Community Theater, three-time vice president of the Mississippi Little Theatre Association, secretary and member of the board of directors of the Natchez Little Theater and Cleveland (Miss.) Little Theater, and three-time president of the Vicksburg Theatre Guild.
She appeared on stage dozens of times in theaters, including the Pike County Little Theatre, the West Lafayette (Ind.) Little Theatre, the Natchez and Cleveland Little Theatres, the Clinton Community Theatre, the Vicksburg Theatre Guild, Natchez Stage 67, Jackson's New Stage, and the Sardis and Greenwood Little Theatres. She directed a half-dozen seasonal productions for community theatres in Natchez, Cleveland, Vicksburg and Clinton, as well as the Church of the Holy Trinity in Vicksburg and All Saints Episcopal School in Vicksburg. Later in life, she wrote a number of plays, some of which were produced in state community theatres, including "The Villain from Vicksburg," "SM 102," and "Clinton: A Clear Spring Rising." She also wrote several sexual abuse awareness short plays for the Mississippi Children's Home that were staged extensively in the Jackson area.
Active in other community affairs, she formed a foreign film club in Cleveland, was president of the Cleveland Lioness Club and a member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary. She was chairman of Indian Affairs for the Natchez Civic and Welfare Club and spearheaded local efforts to give the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians park status. She was president of the Natchez and Clinton newcomers clubs, served on the advisory board of the Clinton Public Library and chaired a steering committee to form the Arts Council of Clinton, for which she later served as president.
An Episcopalian, she was active in various Episcopal parishes and served regularly as a lector and in other leadership roles.
During her retirement, she became a tutor for the McComb Adult Literacy Council and then its president. She was presiding secretary of the McComb Nautilus Club, gave regular book talks to local nursing homes, and became an active member of McComb's Quilting Society Book Club and the "13" Club. She loved to read and watch movies, kept up with current events, learned to use a computer and played Scrabble and bridge whenever she could.
She leaves many devoted friends who helped care for her in her later years. She was a proud graduate of the McComb High School Class of 1943 and held a bachelor's degree in English from Louisiana State University and a master's degree in speech from Mississippi College.
Mrs. Dudding was preceded in death by her husband, Ben Dudding, an Entergy production executive; and her siblings, William L. White Jr. of Arlington, Texas, Audrey White Soule of Larkspur, Calif., Dawn White Christensen of Fort Worth, Robert White of North Carolina, and Sharon White of McComb.
Survivors include a daughter and son-in-law, Janet Dudding and James Kaihatu of Bryan, Texas; a son and daughter-in-law, Hank Dudding and Mickie Anderson of Memphis and Gainesville, Fla.; a granddaughter, Kristi Walski Hall and her husband Andy Hall of Vicksburg; and two great-grandchildren, Gloria and Sam Hall.
In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the Big Print Section of the McComb Public Library, the Vicksburg Public Library or the Big Print Section of the MS Library Commission, to the Hospice "Providence," or to the McComb Church of the Mediator Parish.
Ben A. Dudding (1922 - 1989)*
Created by: Ron Manley
Record added: Nov 02, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 60997331