Cover photo for Karen Dianne Atkins's Obituary
Karen Dianne Atkins Profile Photo

Karen Dianne Atkins

December 5, 1949 — April 26, 2023

West Monroe

Karen Dianne Atkins

Funeral Services celebrating the life of Ms. Karen Dianne Durham Atkins, 73, of West Monroe, LA, will be held Friday, April 29th in the chapel of Mulhearn Funeral Home in West Monroe, LA, with Rev. Ricky Baker officiating.  Visitation will be at 10:00 A.M. with the services to follow at 11:00 A.M.

Karen was born December 5, 1949, in El Dorado, AR to the late D.M. and Clarice Odom Durham and passed away April 26th after a lengthy battle with Alzheimer’s disease. 

Karen moved to West Monroe with her family as a child and attended Crosley Elementary, West Monroe Jr. High, and graduated from West Monroe High School.  She attended Northeast Louisiana University, earned a bachelor’s degree in education, and taught for many years before she went back to school to earn her master’s degree in library science from Louisiana Tech University.  Karen was employed by Ouachita Parish School Board and taught at various schools throughout the parish until she retired as the librarian at West Ridge Middle School.  Karen made lifelong friends during her years in education and loved to tell stories of the wonderful times and memories they made at school through the years.  She was an avid reader and office-holding member of the Pentatura Book Club for many years and loved nothing more than to curl up under a blanket with a good book.  She was also a member of the Junior League of Monroe.

Karen is preceded in death by her parents; her brother and sister-in-law, Max and Janeth Durham; her brother, Charles Durham; her sister and brother-in-law, Linda and Tommy Perry; and former husband and father of their two daughters, Oren Howard Atkins, Jr.  

She is survived by her daughters, Rebecca Atkins Hays and husband Brandon; Jennifer Atkins Martin and husband Andy; her grandchildren, Luke Howard Hays, Connor James Hays, Lauren Claire Martin, and Parker James Martin; her sister-in-law, Jean Atkins Shaw and husband Sherman; and her sister-in-law, Patsy Colvin Durham; as well as many nieces, nephews, and cousins. 

Pallbearers will be Tim Durham, David Elliott, Luke Hays, Connor Hays, Keith McGough, Gregory Newton.

Karen came to know of her diagnosis in 2018 and she handled her illness with grace, always making the best of her situation.  While at the Rosemont, she played bingo, balloon volleyball, did arts and crafts, and planted a garden with friends she made there.  Her daughters will tell you that she was a dream to care for and will forever be their hero for how she handled this horrible disease. 

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

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, April 28, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

Mulhearn Funeral Home - West Monroe

300 McMillan Road, West Monroe, LA 71291

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Friday, April 28, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Mulhearn Funeral Home - West Monroe

300 McMillan Road, West Monroe, LA 71291

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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