Bertie Mae Lavalais

Published 10:58 pm Tuesday, November 5, 2013

“Every wise woman buildeth her house…” — Proverb 14:1-3

Services for Bertie Mae Lavalais, 80, a native of Bassfield, Miss., who passed away on Wednesday, October 30, 2013, will be held on Saturday, November 10, 2013 at 12 noon at Pleasant Valley Baptist Church.  Pastor Donald L. Parker will officiate at the service.

Bertie Mae Lavalais was born on January 15, 1933 in Bassfield, to the late James Howard and Joanna Martin-Howard.

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In 1944 she along with her family relocated to Picayune, Miss., and united with the Pleasant Valley Baptist Church under the leadership of the late Reverend E. L. Fox.  While at Pleasant Valley, Sister Lavalais served as a member of the Usher Board, Mission #1 & #2, and Pastor’s Anniversary Committee for many years.  Sister Lavalais was also a member of the Deborah Chapter #2 Order of The Eastern Star.  

She later moved her membership to Bethlehem Baptist Church under the leadership of the Rev. Louis Thomas where she continued serving as a member of many organizations until her health began to fail her.

 She enjoyed fishing and spending time with family. She was fondly referred to as “Moma Bert”.

Bertie Mae Lavalais was preceded in death by: her son, Levern “Bo” Smith; her oldest sister, Lillie Mae Ratchiff; one granddaughter, Denise Dover (who gave her the name “Moma Bert”); and one nephew, Joe James Parkman.

She leaves to cherish her memory: one daughter, Cynthia Smith-Derbigny; one sister, Willie Mae Plummer; four grandchildren: Edward “Bryant” Derbigny III (Heidi), Kimberly T. Robinson, Danisha Dillion-Williams (Walter), and Zipporah Derbigny, all of Picayune; six great-grandchildren: Kourtney Dover, Jalen Stubbs, LaKendall Payne, TaLiyah Clark-Derbigny,  Trinity Wilson, Trenton Wilson;  two great-great-grandchildren, Caleb Simmons and Bradley Laneaux. She also leaves a very special niece/caregiver, Joann Jones; a special cousin, Linda Jones; and two good friends Rose Dixon and Ruth Lester; and a host of other relatives and friends.

Visitation will be one hour prior to service.  Interment will be in Picayune Cemetery.  Entrusted to Browns Funeral  Home.