September 08, 1939 - February 06, 2019
Ann ” MaMa ” Harper passed from this world on February 6th, 2019 at her home in Baxter Springs, Ks. Ann or ” MaMa ” as she was known by so many, was born in Little Rock, Ar. on September 8th, 1939. She met a young Police Officer in Little Rock whose home town was Baxter Springs, Ks. She would spend the next 5 decades making this community a home for her family and loved ones.
Ann is survived by her husband of 58 years, Marvin Harper, three sons, David Harper and wife Erin, Skip Harper and Russ Harper all of Baxter Springs, six grandchildren, Nathan Harper and wife Kenna of Pensacola, Fl., Kimberly Maute and husband Dalton, Douglas Harper, Stephen Harper, Russell Harper and Brody Harper all of Baxter Springs along with three great grandsons, Theo and Dexter Maute, Jaxon Harper. Ann also leaves behind a sister Midge Abercrombie and a brother Buddy Matson and wife Margaret of Little Rock, along with Tracy Matson, her self appointed grandson and Pam Abercrombie her chosen daughter. She was preceded in death by her parents, Harry (Pappy) and Neil ( Matt) Matson.
Ann worked as a Police Officer in Little Rock, managed the original 7-11 store in Baxter as well as working for Yellow Freight and Manley Transfer. She was devoted to her community and especially the Baxter Springs Lions athletic department. Her enthusiasm for the Lions was never lost upon the umpires and referees lucky enough to officiate those games. She loved to fish and could give pointers to even the best of anglers. Ann was instrumental in starting the Lions High School baseball program and never missed a game in which her kids played, Aside from her own children, Ann’s kids included practically every young person that ever needed someone to come out and cheer for them or that just needed some loving attention from a devoted and caring mother.
Ann came to know the Lord in the Baptist Church in Arkansas but most recently was a member of the First Christian Church of Baxter Springs. She loved seeing so many young people involved with the Church and was especially grateful for the works of Pastor Bryan Jones, her lifelong friend and supporter. A Believer in Christ, she held dear to her heart, any activity that drew children closer to God.
Ann was an avid Baxter Springs Lions supporter. In 2008 she received a special recognition from the Baxter Student Council for her contributions to the sports programs. Baseball was her favorite and she really enjoyed watching her grandsons play.. During the season, she would be found working the snack shack, sitting in a dugout or even Umpiring ball games as one of the first women ever to stand behind a base. She served as PTA President for seven years, helped the founding of peewee football, was a Cub Scout Den Mother and was a Razorback fan to the core.
MaMa was a name associated to the youth of Baxter Springs as a woman that was selfless and fearless. Her warm and cheerful nature served as a beacon of hope for anyone who found themselves in need of a friend or supporter. She thought of the needs of others first and gave everything of herself to her children. She held an open door policy for all of Baxter’s young men and women at supper time. Although supper time for Ann was always at 4:30. Which everyone knew, really meant 4:00. She was loved dearly by everyone who knew her and she returned that love, ten fold in the likes of Jesus.
Her impact on the lives of others will will be felt long after her departure from earth and will carry on with her arrival in Heaven.
A celebration of life service will be held Saturday February 16th at 11:00 a.m. until Noon at the First Christian Church of Baxter Springs. This event will be a casual meet and greet occasion. Ann asked that instead of flowers, those wanting to donate should do so to a children’s charity of their choosing.
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