Joan Jackson: Rest In Peace

We are about to enjoy a beautiful Spring season.  February of this year was brutal.  I will never complain about a 90 degree day again.  Maybe.  I will miss one of my neighbors though.  Joan Jackson passed away during the winter season.  She was a long time resident of the 1600 Block of Wharton Street.  She was also a friend of one of my Mothers, Helen Boggs.  I remember her most from when I was a Machine Inspector and she was the Judge of Elections in the 36th Ward.  She had an awesome personality and was what we would call a straight shooter.

She had one son named Michael Jackson.  At her Home Going service he gave poignant remarks about the impact that she made on his life.  She was a Grandmother and a Great Grandmother.  Her neighbors also spoke eloquently of the impact that she had on their lives.  I was speaking with Juanita Jarett the other day and I missed Miss Joan's presence on the block.  I volunteered at St. Barnabas during the Thanksgiving season two years ago.  We prepared meals for approximately 125 people and delivered them to seniors in the neighborhood.  I had a great feeling about what we were doing and we made an impact for people who truly appreciated the meals.

I really appreciate the impact that individuals can have on my life when I meet them.  Miss Joan, after she gave up the Judge of Elections position, would still come and sit with us in the polling place and just reminisce about people and events in South Philly.  We would talk about bars that I only  thought about going into.  We would talk about how the neighborhood was in the 50's, 60's and 70's.  We would generally just have a good time.  Reverend Jenkins preached a wonderful sermon about her life and her presence at St. Barnabas.  I will think about Miss Joan and be thankful for the fact that I had a chance to share a part of her life.  Rest in Peace.

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