Martha Hardage Magee, 90, died Tuesday, February 18, 2020 at Highland Home. She was born in Madden, MS on January 12, 1930 to Florabel and Algie Hardage. Growing up with her family and friends in Leake County formed her strong and loving core. While she would eventually move away, Leake County was always home in her heart and even in her later years she enjoyed making those familiar connections.
After graduating from Madden High School, Martha attended East Central Community College and the University of Southern Mississippi. She obtained a degree in home economics and went to work as a Home Economics Extension Agent. She loved her time working in the field in Pearl River County where she made lifelong friendships. It was while attempting to parallel park her car on the streets of Poplarville that she met the love of her life, Wilson “Bill” Magee. Seeing her struggle, he offered his assistance and a bond was formed that lasted over 61 years. They married in 1954 and moved to Hattiesburg for several years before settling in Jackson.
Together, they were a formidable team. They loved building a family and adored their two children, Wilson and Beth. Martha was the ultimate homemaker and caretaker. She loved nothing more than serving a delicious meal or helping a friend. Once her children were in school, she returned to school, obtaining her certification as a registered dietitian. For nearly 30 years, she was employed at Mississippi Baptist Medical Center where she served as Director of Therapeutic Dietetics. In this role, she thoroughly enjoyed her opportunities to check in on family and friends to make sure they got a little something extra on their tray, diet permitting. Following her retirement, she transitioned into her most cherished role as that of a grandmother.
Soon after her husband’s death in 2015, her health declined and limited her ability to move much beyond a bed. Her strong constitution and positive outlook were wondrous to behold. Visitors often commented that they came to encourage her and they always left lifted up themselves. Perhaps one of the greatest testaments of her life was the steady flow of visits from her dear and faithful family and friends. Her children are grateful beyond words for their constant love and caring.
Martha was preceded in death by her parents and her husband. Survivors include daughter, Beth Magee Smith and her husband, Steve of Jackson and their son, Harrison Magee Smith; son, Wilson K. Magee Jr. and his wife, Hilary of Sherborn, Massachusetts and Gulf Stream, Florida and their children Nick Winship and Liza Winship (Ben Schein); sister, Carolyn Liddell and brother, Pat Hardage.
A service honoring her life will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, February 22, at Broadmoor Baptist Church in Madison, where a visitation will begin at 9:30 a.m. A graveside service will take place at 2:30 p.m. at the Madden Cemetery in Madden, MS.
The family would like to extend a very special thanks to the wonderful caregivers at Highland Home for all their love, compassion and care. To Dr. Dale Read, physician and friend, the Broadmoor family especially The Grace Sunday School Class and numerous others who supported her and her family with love, prayers and other acts of kindness, we are indeed grateful and blessed.
Memorials may be made to Broadmoor Baptist Church.