Community Mourns Passing Of Ransom Middle Band Director Janie Walker

May 29, 2021

The community is mourning the loss of Ransom Middle School Band Director Janie Suzanne Walker who passed away Wednesday, May 26 at the age of 47 after complications from a recent surgery.

Walker started her teaching career in the fall of 1997 when she became the band director at UMS Wright Preparatory School in Mobile. While living in Mobile, she played in the Mobile Pops Orchestra.

In the fall of 1999, Walker moved back to Pensacola and became the band director at Ransom Middle School. During her time at Ransom, her symphonic and jazz bands received consistent superior ratings at District Music Performance Assessments, and she had 18 students selected for participation in Florida all state bands. She also served as guest conductor for Middle School Honor Bands in Santa Rosa and Okaloosa counties. She was selected as the Ransom Middle School Teacher of the Year for the 2020-2021 school year.

She was born March 26, 1974, in Pensacola and attended Cordova Park Elementary, Workman Middle School, and Washington High School. Walker and her family were active members of First Baptist Church in Pensacola where she was baptized and married and she served as a Children’s Camp Counselor. She also played the trumpet in the church orchestra.

Following graduation from high school in 1992 with honors, she attended the University of Alabama where she received a Bachelor of Music Education in 1997. While at Alabama she was a member of the Million Dollar Band, Jazz Band, Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, Quota Brass Quintet and Mu Phi Epsilon. Walker and her future husband, Chris Walker, met at Alabama and they were both members of the Million Dollar Band.

“Janie had a tremendous impact on music education in Escambia County,” according to her obituary. “She cared deeply for her students and wanted her students to reach their potential. She served as a mentor to other band directors in our area and she was always appreciative of the directors who guided her in her teaching career. Former students of Janie are serving in teaching positions at various middle school and high school band programs in the Florida panhandle and various former students are professional musicians.”

Visitation will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday until a noon funeral service begins at Hillcrest Baptist Church. Burial will be held at Bayview Memorial Park.

The family asks that in lieu of flowers, contributions may made to the Ransom Middle School Band Boosters, Inc., 1000 W. Kingsfield Road, Cantonment, FL 32533-4621.

For the complete obituary, click or tap here.


9 Responses to “Community Mourns Passing Of Ransom Middle Band Director Janie Walker”

  1. Jon Garrett on June 2nd, 2021 2:57 pm

    My Prayers and Condolences to the Family.

  2. Alicia Rynders on June 1st, 2021 1:30 pm

    Mrs. Walker was an amazing Band Director and my daughter learned so much from her. She was well liked and respected by her students and their parents. This is such a great loss to Ransom and those who knew her. Prayers for the family.

  3. Rhonda Lewis on June 1st, 2021 11:23 am

    What a tremendous teacher. Both of my children were members of the Ransom Middle School Band. She was not only a great teacher but she loved the children.
    She will be truly missed.

  4. Pete Krostag on May 30th, 2021 2:06 pm

    Janie was not only a great band director, but was person of high moral character. The influence she had on her students and the community cannot be measured. She is the teacher that all parents would want for their child. She will be sorely missed, however the influence she had will resonate for a long time.

  5. Bonnie Exner on May 29th, 2021 11:40 pm

    Janie was a soft spoken,mild mannered teacher who created an atmosphere of acceptance and love in her classroom. She taught by example,emphasized practice and discipline, and taught the whole child..not just the curriculum. It’s band directors like Janie that teach the preliminary skills that the high school band directors sharpen to produce superior bands like SHOWBAND OF THE SOUTH…Our prayers go out to her family and may they find comfort in knowing how much Janie was respected and loved..Parent of a Ransom band member and teaching colleague of Janie Walker..Bonnie Exner

  6. Jen Rasmussen on May 29th, 2021 9:46 pm

    Our family was truly added to read of Janie’s death as she babysat our three children years ago. She was taken from her family far too early We will be praying for comfort for her family in the days ahead,❤️

  7. BRING IT ON on May 29th, 2021 6:18 pm

    Much to yoing

  8. Lynda C on May 29th, 2021 4:12 pm

    So sad. She made such a difference in so many young lives. My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends. What a sad tragedy. She was a beautiful, kind, loving lady.

  9. Bill Slayton on May 29th, 2021 6:26 am

    Janie made a tremendous contribution to the Ransom and Tate community. It was a great pleasure to sit next to her in the Orchestra at Hillcrest Baptist Church where her and her family attended. She loved to talk about her band, students, and family. She was born to be a middle school director. She not only produced great bands but prepared students to be successful in high school and after. She will be greatly missed.