Mrs. Wilma L. Huggins was born November 10, 1927, in Caney Springs, Tennessee, the fifth and youngest child of the late Eddie Morris, and Lourena Liggett Morris Stuart. She professed faith in Christ at an early age and joined Trinity Church, and later moved her membership to Mt. Gilead Baptist Church in Nashville.
Mrs. Huggins was educated in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) and graduated from Tennessee Agricultural & Industrial College (Tennessee State University). Mrs. Huggins was married to the late Robert R. Huggins. They were blessed with two devoted children-- Nedra Huggins-Williams, Ph.D. and Theodore D. Huggins, and four grandchildren and three great grandchildren.
Wilma lived and traveled throughout the U.S. and numerous foreign countries with her husband (an Air Force pilot). After the death of her husband Wilma returned to Nashville and first took a position as a Library Assistant at Pearl High School. Her professional ambition led her to apply and receive a position with the Tennessee Penal System, where she worked initially as general correctional officer and ultimately moved into management. During the 18 years of Wilma’s tenure of employment with the State of Tennessee, she worked in following positions: Correctional Officer, Correctional Sergeant, Correctional Lieutenant, Captain and retired as an Associate Warden.
Wilma’s dedication, diligence, and her loyalty in performance of her job were executed in her traditional, steadfast and predictable manner. The pinnacle of her efforts, and her success, would ultimately result in Wilma’s achieving the status of having been the first black woman in the State of Tennessee’s Penal System to attain the rank of Captain among all of her peers. In addition, and even to her surprise, for five years she was among the “Top Firing Range Officers” in the State. A number of other honors followed these professional recognitions.
Notwithstanding the honors and a demanding career position; it was during this period of Wilma’s work experience that she volunteered to be the family member to assume the responsibility as the primary caregiver for her mother for more than eight years. After her mother’s death, Wilma once again pursued her love of travel as a dependent of her daughter, a U.S. Diplomat. She accompanied Nedra to three regional overseas assignments in Africa, Asia and East Europe.
While traveling with her daughter she enjoyed and engaged in many new hobbies: fishing, hiking, and bowling. Her favorite was bowling. She led her team “Bravo” to three City championships in Budapest, Hungary. She also volunteered with two Hungarian hospitals for children three days a week, and one day a week at a military hospital for retired Officers.
It is for all of the foregoing expressed reasons and more, too numerous to mention that her daughter and the entire family will forever love and cherish Wilma. The family honors her as one of the manifestations of earth’s supreme human creations.
Wilma joined the Lord, her parents, husband, son, grandson, two sisters and her brother on August 31, 2020. She is survived by her devoted daughter Dr. Nedra Huggins-Williams; sister, Connie Bowie; daughter in-law, Saundra Huggins; sister-in-law, Georgia Crosby; granddaughters: Jillette Battle, Holli Davies, Alexandra Mendelson (Daniel); great grandchildren: Ramia, Sage, and Tessa. A host of nieces, nephews, and several dear friends will miss her presence.