Jo Ann  Abernathy

Jo Ann Lewis Abernathy, age 86, of Rome passed away on Saturday, January 2, 2021, at Floyd Medical Center. Mrs. Abernathy was born July 30, 1934 in Gaylesville, Cherokee County, AL. She was the daughter of Emmett O'Neal Lewis and Mary Ruth Goodman, both of Rome, Floyd County, GA but formerly of Cherokee County, AL. Mrs. Abernathy was a graduate of Gaylesville High School where she met her future husband, Rex L Abernathy. They were married on June 17, 1955, and they moved to Rome, GA that same year. Mrs. Abernathy graduated from Jacksonville State College later University in Calhoun County, AL with a B.S. in Home Economics Education. She also went back and got certified to teach elementary education. Mrs. Abernathy worked as the Floyd County Home Demonstration Agent for the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service and was the Assistant Director of the Tallatoona Community Action Authority, a pilot program for senior citizens. Jo Ann retired from the Floyd County School System in 1993 after teaching for 33 years at Model High School, Pepperell High School, McHenry Elementary School and Alto Park Elementary School. Mrs. Abernathy was an active member of the Floyd-Rome Retired Educators Association for years including serving as President in 2008-2009, a lifetime member of the Jacksonville State University Alumni Association, and a member of the University of Alabama Alumni Association. She was a member of Beech Creek United Methodist Church where she had served on many committees and enjoyed being a delegate to the annual North Georgia Conference for many years. She was, also, a member of the George Walton Chapter, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, and the Benjamin Hardin Chapter 366, National Society United States Daughters of 1812. Mrs. Abernathy enjoyed attending events that involved her children and grandchildren. She enjoyed learning about her family history through genealogy trips. She, also, loved attending and watching Alabama football games over the years. Mrs. Abernathy was preceded in death by her husband, Rex L Abernathy, and her parents, Emmett O'Neal Lewis and Mary Ruth Goodman Lewis. Mrs. Abernathy is survived by her daughter Regina Maria Abernathy Ragan of Columbus, Georgia and son, Cary Alan "Al" Abernathy of Rome, Georgia. She is survived by her two grandchildren, Taylor Nicole Ragan and Joseph Lawson Ragan of Columbus, Georgia. She is also survived by her brother James Charles "Sonny" (Eloise) Lewis and numerous nieces and nephews. A private graveside service was held on Saturday, January 9, 2021 at Myrtle Hill Cemetery with Rev. Randy Robertson and Rev. Tim Galloway officiating and interment following. A Celebration of Life will be planned at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Beech Creek United Methodist Church, 2972 Alabama Hwy., Rome, GA 30165 or the Alzheimer's Association. Parnick Jenning Sr.'s Good Shepherd Funeral Home has charge of arrangements. Please visit our website, www.goodshepherdfh.net, to post Tributes.

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