McMillan Funeral Home

702 West College Street, Booneville, MS


Paula Bridges

November 30, 1955March 9, 2020
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Paula Elaine Wallis Bridges, 64, passed away Monday, March 9, 2020, at her home. She was born November 30, 1955, to Lelon “Pete” and Polly Wallis. She was a member of Trinity Bible Believing Church. Before her retirement, she was a licensed cosmetologist, worked as an interior designer for and managed Custom Creations, Inc. and Debbie Thornton Designs. She enjoyed shopping, socializing, studying the Bible, church, and taking care of Gary.

A Celebration of Life service will be at 1:00 P.M. Wednesday, March 11, 2020, at McMillan Funeral Home with Bro. Johnny Wayne Bridges and Mr. Scott Bridges officiating. Burial will be in Crossroads Cemetery.

She is survived by her husband Gary Bridges; and six sisters, Norma Hemwall, Martha (Harold) Eaton, Junie Sweeney, Janice (Kenneth) Hooper, Joan (Luther) Moorman and Debbie (Keith) Thornton.

She was preceded in death by her son, WesLee Paul Bridges; her parents; a special nephew, Heath Thornton; three brothers, Will Duane Wallis, Zane Wallis and Carroll Wallis; and two sisters, Geneva Jones and Monna Joyce Johnson Weaver.

Pallbearers are Scott Bridges, Duck Leslie, Nathan Bridges and Cayson Inman.

Visitation will be Tuesday from 5:00 P.M. until 8:00 P.M. at the funeral home.

Condolences may be left at www.mcmillanfuneralhome.com.


  • Gary Bridges, Husband
  • Norma Hemwall, Sister
  • Martha Eaton (Harold), Sister
  • Junie Sweeney, Sister
  • Janice Hooper (Kenneth), Sister
  • Joan Moorman (Luther), Sister
  • Debbie Thornton (Keith), sister
  • WesLee Bridges, grandson (deceased)
  • Lelon Wallis, Father (deceased)
  • Polly Wallis, mother (deceased)
  • Heath Thornton, Nephew (deceased)
  • Will Duane Wallis, Brother (deceased)
  • Zane Wallis, Brother (deceased)
  • Carroll Wallis, Brother (deceased)
  • Geneva Jones, Sister (deceased)
  • Monna Joyce Johnson Weaver, Sister (deceased)

  • Scott Bridges
  • Duck Leslie
  • Nathan Bridges
  • Cayson Inman


  • Visitation Tuesday, March 10, 2020
  • A Celebration of Life Wednesday, March 11, 2020


Paula Bridges

have a memory or condolence to add?

Mercedes Vandygriff

April 2, 2020

I loved going to her house and me and jonna laying out in her drive way. Her and Gary were some of my favorite people!

Kate Beenham

April 2, 2020

Dear Paula, my American Mum, We came into each other's lives in 1987 when I came from Australia to spend the year with you, Gary & Weslee, I was 16 years old! I always described this as the best thing I ever did as a teenager, and that was mainly due to you! You embraced me immediately, loved, cared and supported me unconditionally like I was truly your daughter! You taught me how to cook Mississippi Mudcake, introduced me to talking on the telephone in the bathroom & frilly curtains everywhere!
In 1994 You and Gary came to Australia for my wedding, you met my parents who were forever grateful to you for looking after me, Simon & all our friends and family with whom you had so much fun with!
In 2016 Simon & I brought our boys, Luke, Nathan & Henry over to visit, and even though you were mourning the passing of Weslee, you loved your "Australian grandbabies." So much had changed but I never felt your love waiver.
Paula, you were always the life of the party and encouraged those around you to have fun as well, you enjoyed life, even though life was not always kind to you. I am overwhelmed by how much our love endured despite how little time we actually spent together in our lives!
I love and miss you and always will, fly free my American Mum
Forever your Australian daughter Kate xx

Renae Bridges

March 31, 2020

Paula you are gone now but you will never be forgotten! Your in our hearts and the sweet memories of you will be with us until we meet again!!! You were such a kind and loving woman of God!! Your singing always blessed my heart!! Gary is doing good right now and we will continue to make sure he is ok! You and Mom keep singing those songs now that the angels can’t even sing!! I know Heaven is sounder sweeter all the time!! Love you always and forever 🥰❤️

Margie Killough Williams

March 26, 2020

Paula Bridges: My sister by choice!! I have the best memories of our time together! I love you so very much and will miss you until we meet again in Heaven. The last time we were together was filled with love and laughter! Thank you Jesus for blessing me with a sister and friend that never changed the way she loved everyone. I know you are with Weslee and loving every minute. Knowing where you are gives peace to my heart. ❤️

Rosalea Allgood

March 26, 2020

I remember Paula’s extraordinary ability sewing custom window treatments and other custom items.

Jonna Bridges

March 25, 2020

Paula, I know Heaven is so much sweeter with you there, but oh how I miss seeing your name on my phone. My fondest memories with you are baking chocolate cobbler on Sundays after church and wearing Gary’s boxer shorts bc y’all kept that trailer so hot! Every Sunday was Olive Garden, chocolate cobbler, and naps. You and Gary were one of my biggest supporters through school. Y’all were always cheering me on and pushing me to do my best. I can’t thank you enough for always believing in me and praying for me and reminding me of what I’m capable of. You always said you considered me one of your own and I honestly felt like I was. I miss you so much and can’t wait to see you again in Heaven. But, until then, I’ll make sure Gary is taken care of! I’ll see you someday. I love you Paula!

Debbie Thornton

March 25, 2020

I remember your first step from Carroll to me, so many wonderful memories and some heartbreaks along the way. Your love will live on in my heart and I will carry each memory safe within me until we meet again. We grew from babies together, we played, we loved, we argued, we went to church together, school together, we sang and played the piano together, we ate together and prayed together, we helped each other get thru Keith & I losing Heath and you & Gary losing WesLee. More than anything else we loved each other. I can close my eyes and still hear you sing “God on The Mountain is still God in the Valley”. My heart is broken but I thank God for having you as my baby sister and the life and love shared. I will love you forever and I can’t wait to Stroll Over Heaven With You!



If anyone ever cared, really cared for someone else it would have to be Paula Bridges. She was a warm hearted and well liked individual, and these wonderful traits came easily to her because she was such a sociable and amiable person, someone who was always making certain that those around her had whatever they needed. Paula was a talkative person who was tactful at all times but typically said what she meant.

       She was the daughter of Lelon "Pete" and Polly Wallis. Paula was raised in Jumpertown, Mississippi. During her childhood she learned to be reliable and respectful. Paula was an obedient child who wanted to win the favor of others. She found it easy to show sympathy and to perform kind acts for others. These admirable qualities would become a part of Paula's personality throughout her life.

      Though Paula was frequently the one to initiate games and activities with her family, she was also quite often the family member who took the role of referee. Paula was a peace-maker with an ability to resolve all sorts of family conflicts. In fact, Paula worked conscientiously to keep those typical family spats at bay. Paula was raised with 11 siblings, eight sisters, Norma Hemwall, Martha Eaton, Junie Sweeney, Janice Hooper, Joan Moorman, Debbie Thornton, Geneva Jones and Monna Johnson; and three brothers, Will Wallis Zane Wallis and Carroll Wallis. Paula and her siblings had the typical rivalries while growing up, but they cared deeply for one another.

      As someone who reveled in the sheer joy of her experiences, Paula was always enthusiastic about new adventures. Although she had an exacting nature, Paula was always tactful. One thing Paula will certainly be remembered for is that, when she got up in the mornings, she was ready and raring to go. As a young girl, Paula had a number of interests and was an active child. Paula took part in basketball. In her spare time she liked spending time with her siblings.

      For Paula, the school routines were never a problem although she generally preferred variety to structure. She seemed to be able to start a project and work right through to its completion. And she was able to do it quickly and efficiently. Paula was also adept at details. Paula was very observant and was generally quick at picking up new things. She enjoyed some courses more than others, having favorite classes and teachers. Her favorite class in high school was Math, and she was also very good in Accounting.

      College can be a challenge, but Paula appeared to be well equipped to succeed. She had a knack for staying focused and on track no matter what was going on around her. Paula had the ability to work undisturbed through all of the constant interruptions that are a regular part of college life. Paula enjoyed using the skills she'd already learned and applying them to new courses. She knew the facts and rarely made factual errors. Paula took Interior Design classes in college.

      There was one thing that all of Paula's friends knew and will still remember, and that is that she was a talker. She could pretty much talk to anybody about anything. This quality is one of the primary reasons that Paula was such a popular person throughout her life. But Paula was also dependable, loyal and trustworthy. Paula was the kind of person who simply radiated good fellowship. While she maintained personal standards and her own personal values, Paula was very accepting of others. With a distinct skill for working things out, Paula was often the person who would organize events. In fact, Paula was fairly comfortable playing the role of “host” for just about any occasion. When Paula made friends, she made true and lasting friendships. While growing up, her best friends were her family.

      Paula was a faithful and loving person. Some would even call her sentimental and a romantic at heart. Her kindness and consideration radiated an aura of warmth to those around her. Paula cared for what others thought and carried that into her marriage. Compassionate and devoted, Paula worked hard to make her new life partner happy.

      Harmony was important to Paula and she made every effort to maintain it with her family. Paula was blessed with one son, WesLee. Paula was always conscious of the feelings others had. She was reasonable and understanding. As a result, Paula was quick to solve disputes and did so without much fuss. Her secret of success in this area was simple: Paula would listen before she would act.

      Taking her work seriously came naturally to Paula, and she expected the same from those around her. Paula was a good team player, someone who was born to cooperate with others. She was what some would call a “people person” and it was demonstrated in her good communication skills. Paula was a steady worker, one who was realistic about schedules. The kind of details that would give family members and work colleagues fits were situations that Paula handled well. She could understand the details without getting lost in the broad “big picture.” Her primary occupation was Manager of Custom Creation Interior Design. She brought harmony to her work environment, doing what was necessary in order to get the job done, while always maintaining respect for her colleagues.

      A methodical woman, Paula enjoyed spending time working on her various hobbies. She had no problem following all of the steps and instructions on a given project and was proud of the fact that she could have something to show for her efforts. Her favorite pursuits were reading her Bible, shopping, and going out to eat with friends.

      Paula was one of those people who took pride in constantly putting forth her best effort. Nowhere was that more visible than in sports. Paula was always enthusiastic and a great team player. In high school, Paula played basketball. Paula also liked being a sports fan and enjoyed following her favorite teams whenever she got the opportunity. Top on her list were Mississippi State games.

     Her high moral standards and traditional values served Paula well with her faith. Religion and faith were important to her. She was a member of Trinity Bible Believing Church for 15 years. During that time, she was active in singing. She was well respected because she was such an outgoing individual who sought to help in any manner she could.

      Not only did Paula enjoy traveling, but she also seemed to enjoy planning all of those trips and vacations. She was a facilitator who could easily make up a near perfect schedule of all of the things to do and see. She rarely tired of going back and revisiting her favorite places. Favorite vacations included Carnival cruises, visiting her "adopted daughter", Kate in Austraila, and singing around the square with family and friends in Mountain View Arkansas.

      Paula was a lover of animals and cherished her pets. One of her favorites was Prissy, a cat, who was a best friend for 12 years. Her family was rounded out by another (two year old) cat named, Prissy.

      Since it was easy for Paula to meet and get to know new people, she quickly made friends, even in retirement. Once she met those new friends, she loved sharing stories and talking about the good old days. In retirement, she found new pleasure in singing, being with her family and going to church. Even in retirement, Paula stayed in touch with her old friends and made plenty of new acquaintances. She was active in the community and felt fulfilled with the opportunities that retirement offered her.

      Paula passed away in her sleep on March 9, 2020, at home in Jumpertown, Mississippi. She is survived by her husband, Gary and six sisters, Norma, Martha, Junie, Janice, Joan and Debbie. Services were held at McMillan Funeral Home. Paula was laid to rest in Crossroads Cemetery, Jumpertown, Mississippi.

      Paula was a fantastic conversationalist who could engage just about anyone in a discussion. And whenever she said something, she meant it. Paula was a down to earth person, outgoing and gregarious. She was without question the type of person who enjoyed experiencing things first hand. She was practical and sensible, but what friends and family will remember her for most is the fact that she was so understanding and kind. Everyone whose life she touched will miss Paula Bridges.