Reva Shirley Schneider Hart, 95, died peacefully on Sunday, March 15, 2020, at home surrounded by her children.
Reva, who was "Mom" to her children and "Nonnie" to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, was born in Louisville, Kentucky, on September 11, 1924, and was raised in Winona.
She actually will always be remembered as “REVA STRONG”, due to her tenacity to overcome and find solutions to most any challenge that came her way. This is the legacy that she leaves behind. One of Reva’s favorite expressions was “It Is What It Is”. She always got through it with valor and grace.
Reva attended Winona Public Schools and was Valedictorian of her class. Reva was not only smart and wise academically; she was a strong example in and of life. She graduated from Stephens College, and it was during this time that she met the love of her life, Ellis T. Hart. While stationed in Malden, Mo., he and two buddies flew to Greenville, where they had their first date. Ellis loved Reva so much that after this first date, he pulled rank on a fellow serviceman and asked if he could be the one to take her out the following night. The rest became a love story of 74 years and the perfect example of marriage. It is considered one of the greatest gifts they passed on to their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
After the war, Ellis and Reva settled in Winona, and took over the ownership of Schneider's Department Store. Reva's dedication to their business was exemplary. She was the buyer, the bookkeeper, the lady on the selling floor, and even the window dresser. While also being a great partner in business with Ellis, she always made time for her children. She placed great importance on the family's faith and drove her children many Sunday’s to Sunday School 180 miles away.
She attended all of their school activities and believed in taking part in the community and the arts. Reva made sure there were many trips to Memphis, TN, to expose her children to Broadway Theater. She was the ultimate trip planner and map reader while traveling out west for three weeks with the family during many summers. Reva and Ellis also owned and operated Perlinsky's Men's Store in Canton.
After their retirement, they moved to Lake Caroline, where Reva loved to play bridge and watch the Pelican Parades. She also had a favorite Heron that she personally named Hermie, and watching him was a favorite pastime that made her smile. Reva loved to travel, play golf, and she and Ellis truly loved the Jackson Cultural Arts scene and community.
Reva was the greatest mother and taught each of her children the meaning of family, respect, consideration, and tolerance for all. Her children and grandchildren knew that if her left eyebrow went up, it was time to say yes ma'am, and do what you were told. She loved fiercely, and she loved honestly. Her family learned so many life lessons from her examples and how she traveled her journey every day.
She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Ellis T. Hart, whom she was married to for 74 years. Additionally, her parents, Joseph and Fannie Schneider, siblings Bernard (Doris) Schneider, Macy Schneider, great-grandchild Savannah Hart, grandson, Jonathon Sonkin, and her son-in-law, Bill Gordon.
Reva is survived by her son Van Hart (Cheryl) of Brunswick, Ga., Macy Hart (Susan) of Jackson, and Ellen Hart and Jo Ann Gordon of Madison. She was resilient, persistent, and encouraged everyone to be their best version. This legacy will be passed on to 14 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews, who were all "her" children as well.
The family requests that memorial contributions may be made to the Jewish Children's Regional Service, P. O. Box 7368, Metairie, La., 70010-7368, The Institute of Southern Jewish Life, P. O. Box 16528, Jackson, MS, 39236, Henry S. Jacobs Camp, 3863 Morrison Road, Utica, MS, 39175 or a charity of your choice.