Genevia Payne Irby was born January 29, 1930 in Oneida, Arkansas to the proud parents Mr. Frank Payne and Clidie Wiliams-Payne. Her parents preceded her in death. Genevia was the oldest of six children.


Genevia accepted Christ at First Baptist of Mellwood Arkansas under the leadership of Reverend Simpson. She later joined Old Jerusalem Church in Old Town Lake, Arkansas. Genevia was a longtime resident of Phillips County, moved to Chicago in 1985.


Genevia was united in holy matrimony on January 24, 1946 to James Irby Sr. From this wonderful union, they were blesses with nine beautiful children. Her husband James, daughters Ora Lee Henry and Clidie Yokely, one sister and four brothers preceded her in death.


Genevia was affectionately known as Red, Jenny, Mama, Mrs Genevia and Aunt Genevia.  She was a very loving and friendly person who touched many lives in many ways. As the oldest of nine children she assisted in the rearing of her siblings. She cared for the elderly and the less fortunate.


Genevia was mild mannered but very stern. She was known for her strong will. She instilled in her children the importance of helping each other out, even if it’s just being there for moral support.


Genevia assumed many roles in her life (daughter, sister, aunt and wife) but she was most proud of her accomplishments as a mother. On holidays and special occasions she would express her deep emotions and gratitude for having raised such a loving family that she loved to be around.


Genevia had a fun and loving personality. She took great pride in her soulful cooking which no one could compare. She loved her garden, sewing and canning her own preserves. Her hom was the meeting place for weekly family gatherings. She took part in the family activities; she had amazing recall and would share many stories about the “good ole days.”


After an extensive battle with illness, with her children at her bedside, she surrendered to the Lord’s eternal care in Wednesday, Januarry 24, 2018.


Genevia leaves to sherish her memories: three dautghters, Patricia (Robert) Hart (Chicago, IL), Debra Irby-Stewart (West Helena, AR), Neshell (Marvin) Cooper (Country Club Hills, IL); four sons, James (Annie) Irby (Elgin, IL), Charles Irby, Maceo Irby, Reuben King (Chacago, IL); three sisters, Barbara Jean Stormer, Genora Genous, Bobby Lloyd (Chicago, IL); Eighteen grandchildren, thirty four great grandchildren, thirty five great great grandchildren, and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.


“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, and I have kept the faith.” Timothy 4:7