Jimmie Luton dies at 103: “She just loved life”

Jimmie Luton, an active Martindale-Brightwood parish resident and longtime business owner, died on May 26th. She was 103 years old.

Luton’s daughter Pearl Carter had lived across from her mother on Yandes Street for 50 years. The two were often together as Luton continued to live in their home.

For her, “The Jerry Springer Show” was appointment TV in the living room.

“She just loved life,” said Carter. “She lived her way and the way that God led her.”

Carter, a constant attendee at community meetings, said her mother was usually with her at all of the neighborhood events and she was particularly interested in the people on her street.

Luton also opened a beauty salon, Jimmie’s Lapetite, on 16th Street in the early 1960s. She was a beautician there for 45 years, Carter said.

Luton was born in Hopkinsville, Kentucky on June 21, 1917, to George Bernard and Ivory Pearl Caldwell, according to her obituary. She was an only child.

The family moved to Indianapolis when Luton was a child and attended the Emmanuel Baptist Church and the 16th Street Baptist Church, which later became the Oasis of Hope Baptist Church. She was baptized when she was 17.

Luton was the oldest living alumnus of the former John Hope School # 26. She told the recorder for an article marking the school’s 100th anniversary in 2020 that music was her favorite class.

Luton graduated from Crispus Attucks in 1936 and has worked at the box office of various Indianapolis theaters, including the Walker Theater Company. She later took a factory job before opening her salon.

“It wasn’t like she was a stranger in town,” Carter said.

Luton’s visit and funeral took place on June 4th at the Oasis of Hope Baptist Church. She is buried in Sutherland Park Cemetery.

Contact Author Tyler Fenwick at 317-762-7853. Follow him on Twitter @Ty_Fenwick.

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