Alma Ruth Harris Hodge died in her home in Dallas on February 15. Her daughter, Anne, was with her, holding her hand when she died. Alma was 86.
Alma was born on February 3, 1935, in Pettigrew, Arkansas, to Thomas and Desta Harris. The family established deep roots in Stilwell, Oklahoma. Alma had ten siblings, all of whom she loved dearly. Of the seven brothers (Joe, David, Howard, Ray, Doyle, Richard, and Louis), Ray and Richard are still living. Of the three sisters (Eula, Nina, and Sue), Nina Harris Luce and Sue Harris Ball are still living.
A spunky, strong-willed young woman, Alma, at the age of 17, took the train to New Orleans to study nursing. She trained at Charity Hospital and became a nurse on the psychiatric ward. That is where she met the love of her life, Robert (Bob) Hodge, a medical resident training to be a psychiatrist. Alma and Bob were married in 1958.
Their son, David, was born in 1959. They moved to Dallas, Texas, in 1961. Their daughter, Anne, was born in 1962. Alma loved her adopted city of Dallas and was an avid fan of the Cowboys, Rangers, and Mavericks.
Alma and Bob bought their home on Belclaire Avenue in 1966, and that is where they lived for the remainder of their lives. Alma loved her house. She liked to decorate, explore antique stores, and collect blue willow china. The consummate hostess, Alma’s house was a gathering place for family and friends. Alma hosted her friends at innumerable “sewing club” meetings where there were no sewing needles and “committee meetings” where there was no agenda.
Alma is survived by her four remaining siblings, her two children, David’s wife Julie, her two grandchildren Philip Hodge and Stephen Hodge, their wives Whitney and Hayley, her great-grandson Casey Hodge, and many nephews, nieces, and in-laws.
According to Alma’s wishes, a small portion of her ashes will lie with her mother in Stilwell, Oklahoma, and the bulk of her ashes will lie with her husband in Oxford, Mississippi. A memorial service is being planned this summer in Oklahoma.
If you wish to make a donation in Alma’s memory, please consider an organization that supports the profession of nursing.