James C. Burke Sr.
A celebration of life for James Clarence “Jimmie” Burke Sr. will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. at Greater St. Paul A.M.E. Church, 1085 Ossie Davis Parkway, with the church pastor, the Rev. Rochelle McCray, offering words of comfort.
“Jimmie,” as he was affectionately known, was born March 2, 1948 in Waycross, the third child of James Burke Jr. and Carrie Mae Frances Jackson-Burke Duhart.
He received his formal education from the public school system of Waycross and graduated from Center High School in 1966 with honors. He received a bachelor of arts degree in political science from Knoxville College in Knoxville, Tenn., and graduated from the University of Miami School of Law in Miami, Fla., with honors with a Juris Doctorate Degree in 1973.
Occupationally and professionally, he was the executive director of the Legal Aid Society of Dade County, Fla., and a partner in several law firms in the Miami, Fla. area. He was also active in the political arena where he served the Florida House of Representative District 107 from 1983-1992 rising to become the first black Speaker Pro Tem of the Florida State House of Representatives for two years.
He later served as a commissioner on the Dade County Board of Commissioners for three terms.
In 2008 he moved back to Waycross where he launched a newspaper and made it available on-line known as “The Times of South Georgia.” He also broadened his activities and made an entry into the fields of acting and producing plays locally. His famous acting career included the play Pearlie Victorious (written by Ossie Davis, formerly of Waycross) as he played the character of “Gitlow Judson.”
Always dedicated in serving his community, he served as an executive board member for the Waycross Branch of the NAACP, a Ware County Public Housing Authority commissioner and a board member for the McKinney Health Center.
He was a dutiful member of Greater Mt. Zion A.M.E. Church where he served on the church finance committee, produced a newsletter and often acted as photographer at various church functions.
He departed this life Saturday (May 7, 2016).
In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his step-father, Lee Duhart, maternal grandmother, Doll Hall, his maternal grandfather, Jessie Clarence Jackson, and a sister, Dorothy Duhart Davis.
Those left to cherish his memory include his children, James C. Burke Jr., Carmen McPaul Johnson, Ebonie B. Mukasa, Constance Burke, Kimberly Woodard and Bianca Rodriguez; 17 grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; four sisters, Sharon Denise Duhart Johnson (Charles), Patricia Anne Burke Hambush (Waldemar), Andi Duhart Anderson and Josephine Smith; three brothers, Gerald G. Burke (Ethelda), Lawrence B. Cochran and Joseph Burke III (Gwelda); favorite uncles and aunts, William and Mary Hall, Lorene Jackson Robinson, Barbara Jackson, Cooper and Blondell Jackson; other uncles and aunts, Kenneth Clarence, Charles, Allen, Morris, Earnestine and Rena, of the Jackson family; numerous cousins especially, Dolly Elaine Robinson and Phyllis Hall Perry; nieces, nephews and other relatives; a god-child, Samantha (Mae) Seidman; special friends, Kenneth Paulk, Emory “Big O’ Marcus and Joel Maxwell; and other friends.
Friends are being received at the home of his sister and brother-in-law, Denise and Charles Johnson, 633 Owens St.
Fluker Funeral Home, 985 Ossie Davis Parkway, is serving the Burke family.

Belinda A. Mayfield
Belinda Akin Mayfield, 62, died Wednesday night (May 11, 2016) at Mayo Clinic Health System in Waycross following a short illness.
She was born in Villa Rica, and lived in Haralson and Carroll County most of her life before moving to Waycross several years ago. She was a former seamstress and inspector for clothing companies and was a member of Temple Church of God in Temple, Ga.
She was a daughter of the late Alvis Akin and Viva Smith Akin. She was also preceded in death by a sister, Betty Jo Glover, and a brother, Rayford Akin.
She is survived by a daughter, Stormy Mayfield Parten (husband, Kevin), of Waycross; two grandchildren, Hunter Parten and Deanna Parten, both of Tifton; a nephew, Randy Jennings, of Tifton; a great-niece, Natasha Deese, of Bremen; and several cousins.
Memorialization will be by cremation.
Music Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.
Sympathy may be expressed by signing the online registry at www.musicfuneralhome.com

Joel L. Strickland Sr.
Joel L. Strickland Sr., 77, died Thursday (May 12, 2016) evening at his residence following an extended illness.
Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by Music Funeral Home.

Crystal Hope Simpson
BLACKSHEAR — Crystal Hope Joyner Simpson, 33, of Blackshear, passed away suddenly Wednesday (May 11, 2016) at Mayo Clinic Health System in Waycross.
Born in Blackshear, she was the daughter of William Carroll Lewis and Donna Hope Lewis. She was also preceded in death by her biological father, Harold Joyner, her brother, Clay Joyner, and her uncle, Bobby Kern.
She was a homemaker who loved taking care of her children, they were her world. She also enjoyed knitting, reading, writing and cooking. She attended Destination Church in Blackshear and Blackshear Church of God.
Survivors include her husband, Daniel Simpson, of Blackshear; two sons, Zachery Tyler Simpson and William Isaac Simpson, both of Blackshear; two brothers and a sister-in-law, Troy Cleveland Hope, of Patterson, and Harold Cager Joyner (Kathy), of South Carolina; three sisters, Tiffany Watson, of Blackshear, Tina Champion, of Jacksonville, and Elizabeth “Betta” Francesca Welch, of Blackshear; a nephew, Thomas Carl Hope; two nieces, Madison Tracey and Trinity Hall; several other friends and relatives.
A memorial service will be held Saturday at 4 p.m. at Frye Funeral Home with Pastor Johnny Mitcham and Pastor Rodney Thrift officiating.
Arrangements are with Frye Funeral Home, Nahunta.
Sympathy may be expressed by signing the online registry at fryefh.com

Joyce Britt
A funeral for Joyce Britt was held Thursday morning at Miles-Odum Funeral Home Chapel with the Rev. Jason Marden and Terry Hagin officiating.
Burial followed in Greenlawn Cemetery.
Pallbearers were Ronald Davis, Trey Britt, Allen Britt, Evan Britt, Britt Miller and Brad Fewox.
Honorary pallbearers were Care Takers at Bayview Nursing Home.
Miles-Odum Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.