Wilma Franklin

Wilma L. Franklin, 92, of Arkadelphia, Arkansas passed away Tuesday evening, February 21, 2023, at Baptist Hospital in Arkadelphia.

Wilma was born in Jonesboro, Arkansas, November 17, 1930, to Claud Forrest Malcom and Alta Lee Wilson Malcom. She went to school in Arkadelphia. She was married to Frank Franklin until his passing in 1971. Wilma was a faithful member of Faith Missionary Baptist Church.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, her daughter, Sammie Thompson, and her son, William Randall Freeman, and the following brothers and sisters: James F. Malcom (Lorena), Paul W Malcom (Lillian), infant Florence Laverne, Doyle F. Malcom (Corine), Bertha Whitworth (William E), Charles Tillman, Claudean Sealy (Garland) and CF Malcom.

Wilma was predominately a homemaker. She worked for a few years at Hollywood Vasserette alongside her sister and best friend, Claudean. She and Claudean kept small children for many years in Wilma’s home.

Many have said to Wilma since Claudean passed, “Whenever we saw one of you, we saw both of you.” These last two years have been a challenge for Wilma not having her sidekick. We rejoice that they have now been reunited.

She leaves behind her children, Flora Naff (Glen) of Crossett, Arkansas, and Maurie Maestas (Mike) of Hot Springs, Arkansas, Randall Freeman (Robert Biffle) of Houston, Texas, Chastity (Nikki) Neal of Arkadelphia, and Constance (Connie) Stone (Shea) of Arkadelphia. Wilma leaves behind grandchildren, great grandchildren, and great, great grandchildren.  Wilma leaves behind a host of nieces and nephews.

Pallbearers will be Robert Biffle, Christian Lemley, Payton Long, Mike Maestas, Jeremy Norman, Shea Stone and Eric Vail.

Visitation will be Thursday evening, February 23, 2023, 5:00pm-7:00pm at Ruggles-Wilcox Funeral Home. Her funeral will be on Friday, February 24, 2023, 10:00am at Faith Missionary Baptist Church, Brother Robbie Horne, officiating. Interment will be at Richland Cemetery for the family only.

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