Cover photo for Rubenia Crawley's Obituary
Rubenia Crawley Profile Photo
1930 Rubenia 2023

Rubenia Crawley

May 20, 1930 — January 29, 2023

Livestream of Funeral Service 

Hazel Rubenia Stroup Crawley, went on to her New Beginning with Jesus on Sunday morning, Jan. 29, 2023, in her home in Sardis, MS, with loving family members at her side. Rubenia lived a long, full life of 92 years here on earth, but joyfully is spending an eternity with her Heavenly Father and many others whom have gone on before her.

The funeral service will be held on Wednesday, February 1, 2023 at 2:00 PM, with visitation from 1:00 PM until service time at Wells Funeral Home Home with Bro. Albert Wilkerson officiating.

She was born in Calhoun County, MS to Orna Murphree and Walter Lee Stroup on May 20, 1930. Rubenia grew up in the Shine Turner community, and attended Crowder school. She met Joe L. Crawley in the late 1940’s and they married Jan. 30, 1950; although she loved to tell folks that she was not fond of him when they first met! But, they grew together and matured throughout their adulthood; making folks often laugh out loud at how they would communicate with each other.

Until recently, Rubenia was an active member in First Baptist Church, Batesville, although many people will recall her years previously, as a longtime member of Sardis Lake Baptist Church. She was known for making a connection once she met anyone.  Once you met her, she wanted to know more about you and who your ‘folks were’, because she had deep roots to several communities, she would always know someone kin to you. She liked knowing the ‘family ties’ that bound people together.  Family meant so much to Mrs. Crawley. She and Joe embedded that love of family into their children & grandchildren. Once you met Rubenia, you wouldn’t forget her. She certainly made a lasting impression on people throughout her lifetime! You never had to ask for her opinion on any subject; she assumed you wanted to know what she thought, so she openly shared!   

Anyone who knew her well, knew she was a hard worker at home, and during the many years she worked outside the home.  She was a seamstress at the Girdle Plant in Batesville and also at Panola Mills, where she retired after many years. After retirement, she continued to work hard at home from cooking to cleaning, gardening and taking care of everyone and everything; day in and day out.  She was proud to plant & harvest a large vegetable garden until she was in her 80’s.

Rubenia was preceded in death by many family members, including her husband of 54 years, Joe L. Crawley; one son, Dr. Willard Karol Crawley, Sr., one granddaughter, Sheila Suzanne Crawley and two great grandsons, Tyler Lee Melton & Joshua Conner May.  She was the last remaining sibling of the 6 Stroup children, including 2 sisters, Cordie Stroup Pierce & Hilda Stroup Austin, along with 3 brothers, Durrent Stroup, Bilbo Stroup & Billy Ray Stroup.

Those left to continue Rubenia’s legacy include her daughter, Janis Crawley Cathcart of Sardis & Larry Ray Crawley of Michigan and Gail Long Crawley, daughter-in-law.

10 grandchildren including, Brandy Bailey (Victor), Willard “Will” Crawley, Jr., Elisabeth Harris, Kristy Crawley, Andrew Crawley (Julianna), Kacey Crawley (Bonnie), Dana Ware (Jason), Renae Melton, Joseph Matthew Dooley and Brooke Sinard (Joshua).

19 Great Grandchildren, LeaTodd Ware Legge (Ryan), Daniel Joseph “D.J.” Melton, Alexander Bailey, Abigail Bailey, Jacob Gregorio, Ava May, Sawyer May, Sebastian Harris, Clayton Harris, Ellie Harris Hudson (Joshua), Ayla Crawley, Avery Crawley, Cayson Crawley, Lucy Crawley, Hazel Crawley, Leo Crawley, Nova Crawley, Logan Harvey and Lawson Harvey.

The family wishes to express their gratitude to Legacy Hospice for their outstanding care and ministry throughout the last few months. Along with two loving caregivers, Virginia “Geneva” Harrison & Mary Jo Hudson, for their continued care and attentiveness.

Anyone wishing to honor the life and love of Rubenia with a memorial donation, please send those to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis, TN, or Foundry Farms Ministries, Cullman, AL.



To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Rubenia Crawley, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, February 1, 2023

1:00 - 1:45 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

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Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Sardis Lake Baptist Church Cemetery

24709 Mississippi 35, Sardis, MS 38666

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