Dorris Christina Lemmon Chitty
December 10, 1921 - May 3, 2014
Dorris Christina Lemmon Chitty, 92, a longtime resident of Houma, LA, passed away at 1:30am, Saturday, May 3, 2014, at Heritage Manor Stratmore Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Shreveport, LA. Visitation will be from 7:00pm until 9:00pm, Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at Myers-Colonial Funeral Home in DeRidder, LA. Funeral services will be at 10:00am, Wednesday, May 7, 2014 at the Church of Christ in DeRidder, LA with burial following at Woodlawn Cemetery.
Dorris is survived by her 7 children, Charolette Crawford and husband Joe of Houma, LA, Donna Joppie and husband Rick of Horseshoe Bay, TX, Darrell Chitty and wife Nona of Bossier City, LA, Leah Walton of Searcy, AR, Gary Chitty and wife, Susie of Spring, TX, JaNiece Cefalu and husband Joe of Nacogdoches, TX, and Randy Chitty and wife Suzanne of Spring, TX; 16 grandchildren and 20 great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband of 58 years, Jessie Leonard Chitty; granddaughter, Hope Renee Bailey, brother, Clarence Melvin Lemmon; parents, John Hickmon Lemmon and Emma Frances Haley Lemmon.
Dorris was born December 10, 1921 in Rocky, Washita County, Oklahoma. She lived in Oklahoma and Texas until 1939 when she and her family moved to a rural area of Beauregard Parish, LA. On July 28, 1940, she married Jessie Leonard Chitty in DeRidder, LA. Three of their seven children were born in DeRidder.
In April of 1947, Leonard and Dorris moved their family to Houma, LA where they lived for many years. Four more children would be born to them there. During their time in Houma, they co-owned and operated several businesses including Leonard’s Mattress Works and Upholstery Shop, Tideland Towing, and Tideland Oil Transportation. Almost immediately upon arriving in Houma in 1947, Leonard and Dorris began working to establish a congregation of the Church of Christ in Houma. In 1949, they helped to get the funding and oversaw the building of the first meeting hall for the congregation. By 1960, the congregation had grown so large that a much bigger church building was needed. They were deeply involved in getting that larger meeting place built also. It is still used as the meeting place of the Hollywood Road Church of Christ to this day. Leonard and Dorris remained steadfast in their work with the church as long as they were physically able.
Throughout his lifetime, Leonard dealt valiantly with a form of muscular dystrophy that caused him many major health problems. Dorris was his caregiver until his death in May of 1999. Even in his final days, when his problems became so acute that he had to enter a nursing home, Dorris was at his side almost constantly.
After Leonard’s death, Dorris lived with her daughter and son-in-law, JaNiece and Joe Cefalu, in Nacogdoches, TX until she developed dementia problems that required close monitoring, both day and night. She moved into as assisted living facility in Nacogdoches for a while. In 2010, she was moved to a facility better suited to meet her needs that was located in Bossier City, LA near her son Darrell and his wife Nona. The following year, she went into the Heritage Manor Stratmore Center in Shreveport because, by then, her dementia had developed into Alzheimer’s and this facility was better equipped to care for her. Darrell and Nona kept close watch over her during the years she was in Northern Louisiana. Other family members came as frequently as they could to visit with Dorris until she passed away on May 3 of this year.
Dorris Lemmon Chitty was a kind, gentle, and generous Christian lady who was greatly loved by her family and many others also. She will be greatly missed by all of them.