Margaret's Story

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A Funeral Mass for Margaret Rula will be held Monday, July 10 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Paul Catholic Church in Vicksburg, MS, with Father Francis Cosgrove and Father Tom Lalor concelebrating. Burial will be at Cedar Hill Cemetery with Robert Barham Family Funeral Home in charge of the arrangements.
Mrs. Rula, age 90, of Meridian passed away Wednesday, July 5, at North Pointe Health and Rehabilitation.
Mary Margaret Chatham was born March 14, 1927, in Vicksburg, MS, to Roger Paul Chatham and Martha Ethel Griffin Chatham. She graduated with honors from St. Francis Xavier Catholic School and All Saints Episcopal College in Vicksburg. She married Joseph Thomas Balzli in 1947, and they made their home in Vicksburg where Joe coached and taught at St. Aloysius High School. They were blessed with a son, Tom, and a daughter, Ann. Margaret taught first grade at St. Francis Xavier for over a decade before embarking on a career with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Waterways Experiment Station and later with the U.S. Air Force.
Her husband, Joe, passed away in 1981, and she married Adam Rula in 1984. He died in 1999, and she then moved to Starkville, MS to be near some of her grandchildren. In 2006, she moved to Meridian. Her grandchildren will always remember the special walks to the "green rocks," tents in the den, making "cherry things" and their special song "Bushel and a Peck." The great-grands remember swinging and singing on her porch in Starkville.
She was a wonderful cook, and she loved to entertain. Her cakes and pies were works of art, especially her cheesecakes.
Survivors include her son, Dr. Joseph Thomas Balzli, Jr. and wife Marsha of Marion, MS; grandchildren, Dr. Blake Balzli (Miriam) and Laura B. Little (Dr. Reggie) all of Starkville, and Sarah B. Joly (Chris) of Nashville, TN; great-grandchildren, Elizabeth, Mary Margaret, Joseph Balzli, Griffin, Emma Kathryn, Blake Little, Ava Clare, Thomas, and Emeline Joly. She is also survived by her step-children, Richard Rula (Cheri) and Sara Wilmesher (Ed) of Jackson, MS, Paul Rula (Stephanie) of Dallas, TX, and Dr. Greg Rula (Dr. Heidi) of Phoenix, AZ, and several step-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husbands, Joseph Balzli, Sr. and Adam Rula; her parents, Roger Chatham, Sr. and Martha Ethel Chatham; daughter, Ann Balzli; brothers, Rt. Rev. Msgr. Josiah G. Chatham; Roger Chatham, Jr., and Griffin Chatham; sisters, Caroline Chatham and Katherine Chatham Williams.
The family requests memorials be made to the Joseph T. Balzli Athletic Trust or the Adam A. Rula Trust c/o Vicksburg Catholic School, 1200 Hayes St, Vicksburg, MS 39183.
Family and friends may sign the online guestbook at robertbarhamffh.com.
Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service.
Published on July 6, 2017
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