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May 20, 2024

Obituary

Gary Benard "Sonny" Stafford, Jr.

October 28, 1942 - May 18, 2024

Gary Benard "Sonny" Stafford, Jr., age 81 and a resident of Crystal Springs, Mississippi passed away peacefully Saturday night May 18, 2024 at his home. He was born in Franklinton on October 28, 1942 and was a Franklinton High School graduate Class of 1960. Sonny attended Louisiana State University before obtaining his Bachelor’s Degree from William Carey College. He would achieve a Master’s Degree from Southeastern Louisiana University and begin a long career in hospital management, as well as the long-term care industry. Sonny worked for the United States Department of Veteran’s Affairs at hospitals in Tuscaloosa, AL, Albuquerque, NM and Providence, RI then return to Washington Parish as the Administrator of Bogalusa Community Medical Center. He would leave the hospital to join his brothers in operating the family dairy farm for a time, before managing several nursing homes in Mississippi for Beverly Enterprises. Sonny honorably served the residents, their families and countless staff members at nursing homes in Tylertown, McComb, Flowood and Monticello before retiring. In his younger years, Sonny served his community and country in the Army-National Guard. He enjoyed coin collecting as a hobby, but his most important pastime was always spending time with his family. Sonny loved his wife and sons with all his heart and he adored each of his grandchildren. He also cherished the time he spent with his siblings and his large extended family at the old family farm for holidays and special occasions.

He is survived by: Wife: Elizabeth “Libby” Sumners Stafford of Crystal Springs; 4 Sons and Daughters in law: Ken and Mary Bea Johnson of Bardstown, KY Chris and Mindy Johnson of Versailles, KY, Kevin and Julie Johnson of Brandon, MS, Steven and Kelly Stafford of Madison, MS; Grandchildren: James Russell Johnson, Bailey Johnson Shultz and Kevin Shultz, McKenna Johnson, Noah Johnson, Colton Johnson, Ty Johnson, Walker Johnson, Deacon Johnson, Charlie Stafford, Sarah Bryant Stafford; Siblings and Spouses: Judy Simmons, Joe and Carlene Stafford, Jill and Ted Bulloch, Robert and Jana Stafford, Nancy and Leonard Duvic, Kim and Marlon Milton; Sister in law and Brother in law: Mary Alice and Gene Loden of Saltillo, MS; Also numerous beloved nieces, nephews, cousins and many friends.

He was preceded in death by an infant son Robert Felder Stafford, his parents Gary B. Stafford, Sr. and Josie Bateman Stafford, a young sister Sue Ellen Stafford, brother in law Reggie Simmons and other family members.

Following a private family graveside service, Sonny will be laid to rest in the Fisher United Methodist Church Cemetery.

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