Shirley Moss Portis was the second of nine children born on December 8, 1946, to the late Jessie and Annie Laura Moss in Yantley, AL. She graduated from Choctaw Training School in Lisman, AL. Shirley was married to the late Jack “Zack” Portis on March 31, 1978. From that union, two children were born, Floretta Portis and Katrina Portis-Fuertes.
Shirley accepted Christ in her life at an early age and was a faithful member of Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in Lisman (Yantley), AL until she and her family relocated to New Orleans, LA. She faithfully served along with Pastor Robert Brown. Shirley served as head of the Usher Board and Youth Department while at Ray Avenue Baptist Church. Shirley moved to Cuba, AL after Hurricane Katrina and reestablished her membership back at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church where she served as an active member until her death.
Shirley worked for the Orleans Parish School Board System in New Orleans, LA at Livingston Middle School and Lake Forest Elementary School. She held the role of Head Custodian for many years until she retired from Lake Forest Montessori Elementary School. After her retirement, she tapped into the entrepreneurial world and became an Avon Representative. She sold Avon and was a top representative for numerous years.
Shirley departed this life on September 17, 2022, at Ochsner Baptist Hospital in New Orleans, LA. She was preceded in death by her husband, Jack Portis; her father and mother, Jessie and Annie Laura Moss; her brother, Richard Moss; her grandson, Karell Portis, Sr.; her father and mother-in-law, Henry and Essie Mae Portis; and other brothers and sisters-in-law.
She leaves to cherish her memories: her two daughters, Floretta Portis of New Orleans, LA and Katrina (Roland) Fuertes of Cuba, AL; two grandchildren Kedrick Portis, Sr. and Celicia (Johnie) Darby of New Orleans, LA; five great-grandchildren: Karell Portis, Jr. of Cuba, AL, Johnie Darby III, Janai Darby, Kedrick Portis, Jr., and Jalaya Darby of New Orleans, LA; two notable sons, Tramaine Moss of Birmingham, AL and Brent Koen of Yantley, AL; three brothers, Robert Moss, Sammie (Sherry) Moss, and Verna Moss of Yantley, AL; four sisters, Normie (Maurice) Hampton of Butler, AL, Geraldine (Curtis) Ward of Ward, AL, Mary Moss of Birmingham, AL, and Margaret (Jonathan) Ridgeway of Trussville, AL; one brother-in-law, Henry (Louise) Portis of Detroit, MI; five sisters-in-law, Cathy Moss and Lorene Portis of Meridian, MS, Minnie Moss of Jackson, MS, Geneva (Alvan) Adams of Killeen, TX, and Shirley Clark of Savannah, GA; one goddaughter, Kimberly Portis-Carter of Harvest, AL; one great-uncle, Willie Mack Gordon of New Orleans, LA; one great-aunt, Daisy G. McRae of New Orleans, LA; and a host of nephews, nieces, cousins, and friends.