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Obituary for Brenda Ophelia Pate Jackson
Brenda Ophelia Pate Jackson, 66, of Pensacola, FL and formerly of Bonifay, FL passed away peacefully at her home on Sun., Feb. 12, 2017, following a valiant battle with Glioblastoma Stage 4 cancer. Brenda was born on Nov. 13, 1950, to James Earl and Edna Melvorie Wright Pate in Bonifay. She was preceded in death by her father and mother; and step-fathers, Harold G. Pitman and Willis “Bill” Austin Horton, both of Pensacola, FL. Brenda is survived by her husband of 45 years James “Jimmy” Strickland Jackson of Pensacola, FL; her daughter, Amanda Lauren Jackson (Mark Katafiasz) of Ocala, FL; her son, Ryan James Jackson (Amy Williams Jackson) of Tampa, FL; and three grandchildren, Scarlett Grace Katafiasz, Logan James Jackson and Ethan Grady Jackson. Brenda is also survived by her sister, Karon Pate Meeks; a niece, Kimberly Meeks; a nephew, James Earl Meeks all of Marianna, FL; and her sister-in-law, Delona Jackson of Pensacola, FL; as well as numerous cousins, nieces, nephews and friends. Brenda grew up in Bonifay, FL where she graduated in 1968 from Holmes County High School, having served as a Varsity Cheerleader. She received her Associate of Arts degree in 1970 from Chipola Junior College and received her Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education in 1973 from Florida State University. She taught middle school science for over 35 years, most recently retiring from Bailey Middle School in Pensacola, FL after 18 years. Brenda was a no-nonsense teacher whose commitment to excellence was rewarded with students who excelled in her classroom and beyond as young adults. One of her greatest rewards as a teacher was having a former student, or parent recognize her and thank her for the positive influence she had been in the student’s life. An avid animal lover as a young girl, Brenda acquired her first horse when she was 6 years old. Brenda would later channel her love of horses into training and performing in horse shows and riding competitions, a passion she shared with her daughter Amanda who, along with Mark, is a professional horse trainer and competitor. As an amateur rider, Brenda won/placed in several competitions across the U.S. In recent years, Brenda delighted in her young grandchildren who each filled her heart with hope and love. Her trips to the Moffitt Center in Tampa, FL, were more enjoyable because of the opportunities to visit with her children and grandchildren. Each new photo of Scarlett and Logan and Ethan was cherished; and each landmark event was celebrated and the photos and detail were shared with her friends. The family will receive friends from 5:00 pm. to 7:00 pm. on Thurs., Feb. 16, 2017 at Faith Chapel Funeral Home South. Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Fri., Feb. 17, 2017 at Faith Chapel Funeral Home South with Pastor Don Coker officiating. The burial will be held at 2:00 p.m. in Shady Grove Baptist Church Cemetery, Bonifay, FL following the services. The family extends special thanks to the doctors and nurses of the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, FL whose skill and care added quantity and quality of life, after Brenda was diagnosed with cancer. Additionally, the family is grateful to the staff of Covenant Hospice in Pensacola, FL who provided care for Brenda in her home during her last weeks. A very special thank you is also extended to Brenda’s caring friends who gave of their time and demonstrated their love in very real and tangible ways that added joy and comfort to her life and encouragement to the family. In lieu of flowers donations can be made to Panhandle Equine Rescue, P. O. Box 777, Cantonment, FL 32533 or the Junior Humane Society, 901 Williams Ditch Road, Cantonment, FL 32533. FAITH CHAPEL FUNERAL HOME SOUTH, 100 Beverly Pkwy., is entrusted with arrangements. You may send condolences to the family at www.fcfhs.com
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