Mary “Nelda” Atwood (née Pody) of Birmingham was born on Nov. 9, 1943, in a log cabin in Coosa County, Ala. She never lost her love of the Appalachian foothills where her hard-working family raised cotton and chickens. She was a proud graduate of Weogufka High School.
Eventually, Nelda married the love of her life, a Mississippi boy named Harold Atwood. The pair made their home in Gulfport, Miss., for 40 years, where they raised their two children, Dean and Misti (Melissa), and were active members of New Hope Baptist Church. Nelda adored her only grandchild, Corbin Atwood.
Throughout the 1980s and 90s, Nelda worked alongside Harold to build and run Atwood Enterprises, a petroleum construction company. After her children were grown, she spent nearly 19 years working for Walmart. Her fellow employees at store #969 in Gulfport became like family to her during her empty nest years.
After Harold passed away, Nelda moved home to Alabama, allowing her to be close to Misti and also her beloved family in the Sylacauga area.
Nelda battled colon cancer for nearly five years. On March 4, 2020, she emerged victorious in that fight by going to her eternal home with Jesus, where she will hurt no more.
She is survived by her children, her grandson, and a precious collection of family and friends too numerous to name. She also left behind two dogs, Bama Bella Boo and Maynard, who were her constant companions in her final years. She was predeceased by Harold, brothers John and David Pody and parents Walter and Mabel Pody.
A visitation will be held on Saturday, March 7, 2020 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM at Currie-Jefferson Funeral Home in Hoover, AL. The graveside service will begin in the Abbey Mausoleum at 3:00 PM with Brother Lucky Langston officiating.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Gideons International online at gideons.org or by mail to 16232 Hanson Drive, Gulfport, MS 39503. Alternatively, memorial contributions can be made to the UAB Center for Palliative and Supportive Care, Department of Medicine Development Office, 1808 7th Avenue South, BDB 420, Birmingham, AL 35294-0012.
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