Seth Drane Adams of Forest, Mississippi passed from this life to the next on Thursday, January 2, 2020. The son of Mary Belle Drane and Seth Thomas Adams, Drane was born on May 31, 1921, in the Weir community in Choctaw County, the eighth of nine siblings. Married to Annelle Burkes until her death in 1983, he had a step-daughter Barbara Ann Johnson Higbie (husband Jack), an adopted daughter Debra Adams Cheeks Nopper (deceased) and her daughter, Farrah Nopper. He is survived by his step-daughter, her children Mark Johnson and Mechalle Myers (Fred), grandchildren Cody Johnson and McCall Johnson, adopted grandson Seth Cheeks, special friend Barbara Roebuck, and a cluster of nephews and nieces, including Baine Adams, Jr. (Katie), Gary Adams (Lorena), and Diann Adams Arinder (Max), to all of whom he was especially dear.
Drane was gregarious, curious and open-hearted, and attracted friends wherever he went. He enjoyed people of all ages and took great pleasure in children, although he also enjoyed playing music for “old folks” well into his nineties. For decades after her death, he retained contact with his wife’s family, receiving visits from them until his last days. And the family of his beloved Barbara were like his own. He never met a stranger and never lost a friend, and he seemed to remember everyone he’d ever known.
Drane was a loyal man, and this fact is especially appreciated by the family of his younger brother, William Baine Adams, Sr., who was incapacitated by polio in 1952 at the age of 27. These two brothers had a particularly close bond, and it was Drane who stepped up to fulfill many of the roles that would normally have been supplied by Baine himself. Their affection for each other was widely known, and Drane’s importance to Baine’s family can hardly be overstated. His lifelong devotion will not be forgotten.
Drane was also talented. He early acquired an interest in country music and quickly showed remarkable ability with varied instruments—guitar, steel guitar, dobro, fiddle—he could play anything with strings. Never bothered with reading music, he just heard the melodies and played them seemingly without effort. After hearing him play the steel guitar, Ernest Tubb of Grand Ole Opry fame invited Drane to join his band. With regret, Drane declined, due to his family obligations, but his love of music never abated. He was able to play his fiddle until the last few weeks of his long life, and his pursuit of all things stringed was well known and admired among his friends and family. He was ready to perform at the drop of a hat and enjoyed doing so tremendously. In his adolescence, Drane’s father allowed him and his younger brother Baine to travel with a professional agent, and forever after he told tales of their adventures.
He was a wonderful raconteur, recalling incidents from his life in great detail, told to the amusement and enjoyment of his listeners. Nearly all his stories ended with a laugh, something all who knew him fondly recall. The man loved to laugh and enjoyed life to the fullest.
Professionally, Drane was a surveyor and city inspector, and spent the majority of his career as an employee of the city of Jackson. His other areas of public service included his lifelong membership in the Baptist church and his work in the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930’s, plus his years of service during World War II as a part of the Military Police. All of these arenas provided rich life experiences as well as avenues of service to others.
Drane lived a good life, one of activity and adventure and affection. He was laid to rest on Saturday, January 4 at Ephesus Baptist Church near Forest, Mississippi. Public visitation was from 10:30-11:30, with the service at 11:30, conducted by Rev. Gary Adams. Graveside service followed.