Howard Lafayette Miskelly was born July 17, 1925 in Faulkner, Mississippi and went home to be with his Lord and Savior peacefully on July 16 just short of his 97th birthday. Howard was proceeded in death by his parents, Homer and Wardie Miskelly and his sister Elva (Neil) Balch.
Howard graduated from Faulkner High School as class president where he selected the mascot and school colors for the black and gold Faulkner Eagles.
Drafted into WWII in 1943, he bypassed all deferments with his dad’s encouragement. He served honorably, earning the rank of Staff Sergeant and being awarded two Bronze Stars.
Howard returned home and attended college at Union University on a basketball scholarship. He later transferred to Mississippi State University where he was president of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity and Cadet Colonel of the MSU ROTC.
After the war, he married the beautiful Letha Ann Street, and they were married 74 years. Howard and Ann’s love for the Lord and for each other stands as a model for all.
Howard and Ann moved to Okolona in 1952 and opened Howard’s Department Store which they owned and operated for 40 years. He loved the Okolona community and especially First Baptist Church where he served as a Deacon and Sunday School teacher for over five decades. He was a member of the Lions Club and founder of the Okolona Country Club where he enjoyed countless rounds of golf. He was appointed to the Veterans Administration Board, served on the board for Mississippi School for The Deaf and Blind, and was the President of the Mississippi Retail Association. His last years were spent in West Point, MS, where he served as an Elder at First Presbyterian Church.
When asked what was most prized in a life so full, Howard would say that his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren all walked with the Lord.
Howard is survived by his wife, Letha Ann Street Miskelly; his five children: Pam (Chuck) Carson, Marty (Jerry) Ishee, Chip (Geri) Miskelly, Oscar (Joyce) Miskelly, and Tommy (Lisa) Miskelly, along with his numerous grandchildren and great grandchildren: Chad (Merry) Carson, Kelli (Edgar) McKee, Jonathan (Anne) Ishee, Joshua Howard (Ragen) Carson, Elizabeth Ann (Tyler) Howell, Caleb (Avery) Miskelly, Miles (Amy) Miskelly, Anna Katherine Miskelly, Falon (Carter) Cowman, Anderson Miskelly, Abby (Colin) Agostinelli, Franklin (McKenzie) Miskelly, London Miskelly, Faith Carson, Jack Carson, Ava Carson, Carson McKee, Geer McKee, Max Ishee, Sims Ishee, Everly Howell, and Charlie Miskelly; nieces Laura Franz and Linda Fulton; nephews Marvin Reid and John Reid; life-long friends Celia and Harvey Fisher. The family sends sincere appreciation for Howard’s attentive care-givers over the last years and the countless neighbors and friends who have continued to visit, call, and pray for our precious Howard.
The family is encouraged by 2 Corinthians 5:8 that while Howard is absent from his body, he is at home with the Lord.
A visitation will be held at First Baptist Church in Okolona, Mississippi on Monday July 18 from 4:30:-6:30 under the direction of Brother Randy Lewman.
A celebration of Howard’s life will be held on Tuesday July 19 at 11am under the direction of Reverend Brandon Bates at First Baptist West Point with visitation preceding the funeral from 9:30-11:00 am. Howard’s grandsons will serve as the pallbearers. Interment will follow in Greenwood Cemetery with military honors.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the First Baptist Church of Okolona (201 West Main Street, Okolona, MS 38860) or the First Presbyterian Church of West Point (PO Box 366, West Point, MS 39773).