Milbra Ruth Franklin Reese
Columbia-Milbra Ruth Franklin Reese, 81, died Monday, April 16, 2018. Born on September 22, 1936, in Columbia, SC, she was a daughter of the late Reverend William Eugene Franklin and Grace Hinnant Franklin. She is survived by her husband, Robert “Bob” Reese; son, James “Jim” Eugene Reese, Sr. (Maria); daughter-in-law, Jane Reese; grandchildren, Wendy Broman (Will), Laura Rease (Evin), Katie Fischer (Matt), Stephen Reese (Madelaine), Forest Reese and Savannah Reese; great grandchildren, Annabelle and Peyton Broman, Dillon and Kayleigh Rease, Tessa and Wyatt Fischer, and Wyatt Kazmier. In addition to her parents, Mrs. Reese was preceded in death by her son, Robert William “Bill” Reese and grandsons, Jim Reese, Jr. and Lance Reese.
While Milbra was a secretary at Williams Furniture Company in Sumter, SC, and Bob was a graduate student in forestry at NC State University, they were introduced by “matchmaker” friends in the furniture store. Bob invited her to see “Sound of Music” and said he “liked the way she held my hand.” Two months later they were married and enjoyed 52 years of wonderful marriage. She and Bob were the closest of life-long companions. They felt that their marriage was one made in heaven and truly complemented each other. She brought a quiet spiritual strength to their marriage. During the following years she completed two nursing degrees, a Master of Divinity, and became a board-certified chaplain. Her special joy was being a staff chaplain at Palmetto Health Richland Hospital for six years. In later years a special pleasure of hers was keeping up with current events, enjoying her yard flowers, and seeing a wide variety of backyard birds feasting on feeders and nectar. But her greatest joy was spending time with each of her grandchildren, encouraging them, and following each of their activities. Whenever anyone spoke of them, it was always “Bob and Milbra.” To their grandchildren it was, “Nanny and Pop.” Her grandchildren’s words about Nanny offer a good picture of this true “Southern Lady”. To them Nanny was a blessing, compassionate, sweet, excellent Grandmother, great listener, Godly, encouraging, loving, gentle, empathetic, quite strength, understanding, beautiful, rich heart, and believing in us. In later years she faced struggles with declining health with courage, quiet resolve, and indominable spirit. During her last hospitalization, she told Bob, “I’m not ready to leave you now. I have too much to live for.” But when the time came she was ready to be with her Lord and Savior and to rejoin her beloved son, Bill. Milbra and Bob did everything together and having her gone is hard. She will be universally missed by a host of relatives, friends, and neighbors.
The service for Milbra will be held at 11 o’clock Friday, April 20th at Shandon Baptist Church, 5250 Forest Drive, Columbia, with Reverend Dennis Banks officiating. The family will receive friends following the service at The Gathering Place at Shandon Baptist Church. Shives Funeral Home, Trenholm Road Chapel is assisting the family.
The family has requested memorials be made to Erskine College and Seminary, Attn: Advancement Office, PO Box 338, Due West, SC 29639 or to the charity of ones’ choice.
Memories and condolences may be shared at www.ShivesFuneralHome.com.