Hugh McLaurin Pepper III, age 88, died peacefully at his home in Ocean Springs on Sunday, February 4, 2018.
Hugh was born January 18, 1930, to Hugh McLaurin Pepper, Jr. and Nola A. Pepper, in Vaughan, MS, where the temperature was zero degrees. He loved to tell the story of his birth and the events leading to it. He spoke with high regard to the years spent in Vaughan, MS, attended college at Holmes Junior College, then called to active duty, playing football and baseball while in the service. After being discharged from the service, he attended the University of Southern Mississippi (Mississippi Southern) , where he was a standout athlete and met the love of his life. He then played professional baseball with the Pittsburg Pirates and after his baseball career, settled in Ocean Springs, MS to coach football and baseball for nearly 30 years. He was a loving and dedicated husband, son, father, grandfather, coach, and friend.
Hugh is preceded in death by his father, Hugh McLaurin Pepper Jr., mother, Nola Arnold Pepper, daughter, Kimberly Pepper, brother, Robert Hugh Pepper and sisters, Sarah Jane Strickland, Nola Jo Williams and Betty Jean Townsend.
Survivors include his beloved wife of 63 years, Janice Galle Pepper, three children, son, David Hugh Pepper (Margaret), daughters, Cathy Pepper Lomax (Mike) and Mary Pepper Schuman (Junie);seven grandchildren, Rossa Williams (Tony), McLaurin Palmer (Kyle), Milo Hugh Pepper (Jamile), Robert Wayne Hood, Nikki Skrmetti (Chris), Malena Packard (Travis), and Buddy Vargas; 12 great-grandchildren, Giselle and Miriam Williams, Navarro and Solomon Palmer, Lennox Hugh Pepper, Ben and Sarah Hood, Brian, Sydney, and Hugh Skrmetti, Piper and Mark Packard; and a sister, Patricia Ann Pepper Grammelspacher.
Visitation will be on Thursday, February 8, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m., with a 1 pm Mass of Christian Burial, all at St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic Church. Burial will follow in Crestlawn Memorial Park.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations in memory of Hugh McLaurin Pepper III, to the Ocean Springs Athletic Foundation Golf Tournament, Jackson County Animal Shelter or St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.
The Ocean Springs Chapel of Bradford O'Keefe Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.