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Rufus Payne

December 1, 1949 — November 7, 2023

Rufus Payne

Rufus Howard Payne, dear Dad and PaPa, passed away on November 7, 2023, at Northport DCH ICU from double pneumonia at age 73.

Dad was born on December 1, 1949, to James Edward and Opal Stephens Payne and resided in the Stewart Community until his late thirties and then moved to Tuscaloosa.

Dad was born with a club foot and was one of Children's Hospital's first patients. He had surgery to correct his foot, but it became infected with gangrene and so he became an amputee at age 2. Dad never let this slow him down, nor did he complain. He was a hard worker and for most of his life worked as a food vendor delivering to Wal-Mart, Publix, Food World and other stores. He met many people and made many lifelong friends through his job. Dad loved to talk and visit with people. He didn't talk a lot about himself but was genuinely interested in whom he was speaking with. He wanted to know how it was going. Dad moved to The Landings of Northport back in January. He had a cozy little home there with his beloved cat Samson, who provided much entertainment for him. He loved his home there and made many new friends. The caretakers there watched over him and went above and beyond helping Dad when he needed it.

Since Dads retirement he's had some health challenges but had a strong will to live. I could tell he was growing tired but hoped to have more time with him. He fought hard at the end and told me he wanted to live to watch his grandgirls grow up. He loved talking with them and always wanted to know what was going on in their lives. He never failed to tell us how much he loved us and what we meant to him. That love was always felt.

One of the ICU nurses told me that Dad said either way, whether he lived or died, it was ok because he has a daughter here and he has a daughter in heaven. The night before he was intubated, he said that usually he was panicky when he got really sick. He said this time he felt calm and that was evident. I stood by his bedside and held his hand and he just looked at me. I think he knew his time was near. It's oh so hard to let him go, but I know he's up there with Mindy, taking deep breaths, enjoying the air and is pain free. We wouldn't wish him back, but things won't be the same without him. It brings a rest to our hearts knowing that he is with the Lord, and we hope to meet him again someday.

He is survived by his daughter Lisa Payne Johnson, one son-in-law Wayne Johnson and three granddaughters: Madisyn Brooke, Mindilee Rose and Maci Grace.

He was preceded in death by his wife Rosalyn Malcom Payne, his daughter Mindy, his parents, his brother Jimmy and sister-in-law Brenda Payne.

We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to the staff at The Landings, the dear friends that visited Dad, and for all the acts of kindness that were shown to him. Everything done for Dad was greatly appreciated and meant a lot to him. Also, a special thanks to the doctors and nurses at Northport ICU who lovingly cared for him. We will be forever grateful.

Graveside services will be held on Saturday, November 11, 2023, at 2:00 pm at Concord Cemetery 9850 Alabama Highway 60 in Moundville. Weather Permitting... In case of rain, service will be held at Community Baptist Church 160 Chancey Lane Moundville, Alabama 35474  with Magnolia Chapel South directing.  

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Rufus Payne, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Graveside Service

Saturday, November 11, 2023

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

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