March 1, 1929 February 21, 2017 Joe Norman Jackson went to his eternal home with Christ, his Savior, on February 21, 2017. "Mr. Joe" was a devout Christian and a devoted son, husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He resided in Opelika, Alabama for the past 43 years. Joe was born on March 1, 1929, on his parents' farm near Piedmont, Calhoun County, Alabama. He graduated from White Plains High School in June, 1947, and left home the following day to enlist in the U.S. Army. His military career spanned nearly 21 years, during which time he was posted to Ft. Jackson, South Carolina; the U.S. Army Finance School in St. Louis, Missouri; Korea and Japan; Ft. Bragg, North Carolina; Ft. Harrison, Indiana; Ft. Shafter, Hawaii; Thailand; the Pentagon in Washington, DC; and Ft. Benning, Georgia. He volunteered for every training opportunity offered to him in the Army; received a field commission to the rank of First Lieutenant in May 1957; and retired as a Major in August 1967. In his early years in the Army, Joe's commanders recognized his aptitude for learning military procedures and regulations, organizing data and fulfilling assigned responsibilities. Recognition of these accomplishments resulted in Joe's early and frequent promotions; he achieved the rank of Master Sergeant within five years of his enlistment. During his military service, he was awarded the Army Good Conduct Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, and the National Defense Service Medal with one oak leaf cluster; he taught at the U.S. Army Finance School (1953 1957); and he was assigned to the Army Finance Corps Board, the research and development unit for Army financial activities at the Pentagon (1961 1963). His final post was to Ft. Benning, Georgia, as finance and accounting officer for the activation of the 11th Air Assault Division. Following his military service, Joe embarked on a second career with the federal civil service in the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service (SCS, now the Natural Resources Conservation Service) in Auburn, Alabama in September 1967. He moved his family from Columbus, Georgia to Opelika in the summer of 1973. Joe fulfilled the duties of increasingly responsible positions within the SCS, retiring in 1988, as the Alabama State Administrative Officer. While in the civil service, Joe completed accounting courses at Auburn University, earning the equivalent of a bachelor's degree in accounting. Joe was predeceased by his parents, Marvin G. Jackson and Lillian Ruth St. John Jackson; his wife of 56 years, Agnes Conaway Jackson; and his siblings: Elbert Jackson, Margaret Jackson, Wilbur Jackson and Arthur Jackson. He is survived by his children: Andrea Jackson (David McAlister) of Auburn; David Jackson, Jerry Jackson and Susan Jackson (Don Jackson), all of Opelika; and Joseph Jackson (Lynelle) of Jacksonville, Florida. Other survivors include his grandchildren: Meredith Turner (Randy), of Opelika; Jonathan Shoff, of Opelika; Hunter Jackson, of Auburn; Kyle Jackson, of Opelika; and Jeri Marie Jackson of Valley, Alabama. He is survived also by his great-grandchildren: Bailey Ward, Kylie Jackson, Hayden Ward and Charlie Turner, all of Opelika, along with numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. Joe kept his commitments and made his family his highest priority, at times having to be both father and mother to his five children in the face of his wife's chronic illness. He was a caretaker at heart, lovingly attending to the needs of his mother and an aunt during the late stages of their lives. In addition, Joe cared for his wife with deep devotion during her many years of continuing sickness as well as her increased needs following a stroke during the latter years of her life. Joe valued education highly, both his own and that of others, as "something that can never be taken away from you." He adored being a father and grandfather and great-grandfather, spending many hours with his grandchildren during their childhoods. Joe's interests outside his family included woodworking and numerous aspects of building construction, antiquing, gardening, genealogy, American history, music, education and teaching. Joe's family is deeply grateful for his many friends who fellowshipped with him when he was no longer independent. Joe's neighbor, Bob Kucik, has been a blessing to Joe and his family, for more than four decades, always ready to help when the need arose. Special recognition belongs to the compassionate caregivers who ministered to Joe's healthcare needs in his last weeks: Annie, Camille, Catherine, Myrtis, Tandy and Tish. Joe's family is truly appreciative of hospice nurse Joey Smith, for his exceptional attention to Joe's comfort and care and support for the family. Visitation will be held at Jeffcoat-Trant Funeral Home in Opelika on Saturday, February 25, 2017, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. A celebration of life service will be at First Baptist Church Opelika on Sunday, February 26, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully suggests donations to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, 1359 Broadway, Suite 1509, New York, NY 10018 (; or to the First Baptist Church Opelika Benevolence Fund, P.O. Box 329, Opelika, AL 36803-0329. Jeffcoat-Trant Funeral Home and Crematory

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