Mildred, “Niecy”, was born on Saturday, September 7, 1957 to Marie Lula Bell Humes and Paul Simmons in New Albany, MS. When Mildred was about 2 years old, her Mother moved her and her seven siblings to the southside of Chicago. Mildred received her education in the Chicago Public Schools. In 1971, she was accepted into Lane Tech College Prep High School in the first class of female students admitted. Lane Tech was one of the top high schools in Chicago, and Mildred was determined to excel. She commuted via public transportation, from the south-side to the north-side every day, all four years, before graduating with honors in 1975.
In 1972, Mildred’s distant father passed away, increasing the angst of teenage years. This caused a deep longing for more,which led to her dedicating her life to God, under the leadership of the late Elder Willie E Gordon, who served as a father figure to her. Mildred was active in the congregation, singing in the choir, teaching Sunday School and Vacation Bible School for the children. She traveled with the saints to many fellowship meetings, revivals and camp meetings and made friends wherever she went.
In 1975, she married Morris Harris and their union was blessed with six beautiful children. Mildred embraced her role as a wife and mother and dedicated her life to cultivate Godly principles and a passion for excellence into her children. She often shared that this was her life’s purpose.
Mildred was phenomenally talented, filling her home with handcrafted linens, clothing, and the aroma of home cooked meals. Her love language was Acts of Service, day or night she availed her talents, time, and wisdom to those around her without hesitation. Family and friends often gathered at her home to celebrate birthdays, holidays and friendship.
She embodied entrepreneurship, sewing wedding dresses, classy lingerie, and Mil B’s Winter Warmers to name a few. She also sold encyclopedias, wellness products, paintings, and joined private shopping clubs to provide extra income for her family while remaining available to care for them. She later returned to school to earn an Associates’ Degree of Science from Joliet Junior College.
In 1995, Mildred founded Finfast Academy, a homeschool where she educated her four younger children up through high school - all of whom have graduated college; some with high honors and graduate degrees. She was committed to her children’s education and ensuring that she was able to manage the negative exposure that school systems often allow. This also created opportunities for travel across the country visiting historic monuments, museums, fellowship meetings, the annual Youth Jubilee along with family and friends too. She also
traveled internationally with family and friends, including England, the Netherlands, Mexico, Canada, the Carribean Islands and a pilgrimage to Ghana, on West Africa’s Gold Coast.
Mildred was the founder and president of You Can Be A Good Parent, LLC providing parents with the tools needed to help children thrive. Mildred’s focus has been parenting for decades. She has devoted her passion and wisdom as a thought leader and distinguished speaker across a diverse spectrum in both the religious and educational sectors. An example of this was her passion for educating families on financially protecting themselves and creating generational wealth through life insurance products in partnership with, People Helping People (PHP), Agency. A lifetime of learning mixed with valuable, happy, and heart-wrenching experiences equipped Mildred to effectively serve a variety of audiences. She also began driving and instructing for Joliet Township High School Transportation where she created training materials and prepared new drivers for CDL testing.
Mildred Bernice Harris, age 63, of Crest Hill, Illinois, the beloved mother, grandmother, teacher and parenting coach was called home to be with her Saviour, July 12, 2021, after living an adventurous and full life. This occurred the day after teaching “The Works of The Flesh,” a Sunday School Lesson streamed and recorded for her live audience to which she ministered throughout the duration of her illness. (These videos have been uploaded to the internet on multiple platforms under her name.)
Mildred was affectionately called Mil by her close friends and Sister Mildred by many of the saints’ children who loved her dearly due to the relationships she built with them on a deep, intimate level.
Two sisters and seven brothers preceded her in death: Ruby Cook and Ellen Cullen, John Wilson (Johnny), Roger Wilson, James Wilson, Paul Jr., Joe Louis, Edward Charles Simmons and Frankie Johnson.
Mildred leaves to cherish her beautiful legacy, her mother: Marie Lula Bell Humes and her amazing children; Linal Harris (Pamela), Ethan Harris, Quentin Harris, Keila Harris, Leila Harris and Kailyn Harris, and nine grandchildren: Nathalia Harris, Valeria Harris, Lucas Harris, Elijah Harris, Royce Briales, Wesley Harris, Legend Harris, Mckenna Briales, and Xane Breen-Harris. Sisters Norma Wilson, Ruby Taylor, Alberta (Edward) Gibbs, Martha Krisel, Nellie Hardin, Maxine Marshall, Shirley Cook, Dorothy Conners, Mary (Charles) Johnson, Brothers: Daniel Simmons, Cleopha Simmons, and James (Lynn) Simmons and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.
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