January 27, 1931 - February 4, 2021
Betty Jo Waits Brown, 90, of Hawthorne, Florida, died Thursday, February 4, 2021 at her home. Born in Leesburg, Florida, on January 27, 1931, Betty Jo’s parents were the late Laura Mable & Jefferson Waits. Growing up in Sanford, her nieces, nephews, and close friends were her playmates. Her stories tell of tree climbing, dancing, long days at Sanlando Springs, hunting with her dad and helping with the family’s Fish House. Moving to Gainesville to attend the University of Florida, there she met and married J. Wallace Brown, her husband of 42 years. Their life became one filled with Gator sports! (The Gators have lost a loyal fan!) Eventually, the family moved to the Hawthorne area. Betty Jo became the kid-hauler to Hornet practices, ball games and fundraisers. Betty Jo loved the water – body surfing at the beach, skiing, swimming in the springs, fishing in both fresh and salt water. For more than 25 years, she worked as an employment specialist for the State of Florida with a keen ear for listening and a compassionate heart for those seeking work. Her later years continued to be filled with church activities (Lake Hill Baptist Church), Scrabble, golf, ballgames and trips with friends and family. Her quick wit, laughter, sweetness, and love for adventure will be missed by those who knew her. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Wallace, son Jay, brothers Jason, Chester, Claude and Horace Waits and two sisters, Zell Harper and Edith Reid. Betty Jo is survived by her daughter, Deb Brown (Tamara Franks) of Boone, NC. She loved and is survived by generations of nieces and nephews who loved her back. A special gratitude is offered to nephew Bobby Brown who made it possible for her to live at home and continue to be active in her community. A sincere appreciation for niece Shellie Terrell, for assistance on a daily basis this last year caregiving with a special touch of hymn singing and prayers at night. Many thanks to Community Hospice for their support and care. Kim, Heather, Nadine, Taylor, Susan, Frankie, Jakie, Kayla, and Sarah were kind and gracious. The intake staff and the 24-hour patient priority line were helpful and supportive. Additional thanks to Dr. Vijay Patel’s team and associates at the Florida Cancer Center. Betty Jo was always warmly greeted, treated gently and professionally. A small graveside service will be held on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. in the Hawthorne Cemetery. At a later date to be determined there will be a full service of celebration of Betty Jo’s full and abundant life. Due to COVID-19 challenges, we ask for any who are attending the graveside service to wear masks and practice social distancing.
Betty Jo Waits Brown, 90, of Hawthorne, Florida, died Thursday, February 4, 2021 at her home. Born in Leesburg, Florida, on January 27, 1931, Betty Jo’s parents were the late Laura Mable & Jefferson Waits. Growing up in Sanford, her... View Obituary & Service Information
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