City committee to honor Hudgins on May 11

Published 9:34 am Friday, May 7, 2010

RANKLIN—A ceremony to honor longtime Franklin Beautification Committee member Irma Hudgins will be held at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 11, at Atkinson Park.

Hudgins, who passed away May 21, 2009, started out as a volunteer and became vice president and president before serving on the commission of the Beautification Committee. A retired educator, she was a member of the committee for more than 20 years.

“She was so instrumental with helping the Beautification Committee and she helped inspire children,” said Sheila Baker, administrative assistant with the City Community Development Department.

Hudgins was born in Nansemond County and lived in Franklin her entire life. She taught for the City of Franklin Schools for 39 years before retiring in 1987.

Hudgins’ daughter recalled how an active childhood helped her get everything from life.

“My mother just kept young by keeping up with the young people,” said Candice Payne. “She loved kids. She wanted them to become the best that they could.”

Nothing made her happier than helping children and working on the Beautification Committee. She taught Sunday school and loved tutoring.

Hudgins enjoyed traveling to Hawaii and going to Red Lobster, but her daughter said Franklin was where she was happiest.

“Because home was the meeting place,” Payne said. “I know I shouldn’t brag about this, but I’m just proud of being her daughter.”

Asked to describe her mother in three words, Payne said “That’s difficult… but I would say helpful, caring and energetic.”

There are a lot of ways to describe Hudgins and her life. But the one thing that describes her best is her motto. “Always do your best, that’s the right way to do it.”