Sara Blackburn (‘Nana’)

September 6, 2023

It is with the deepest sorrow and immense love that we announce the passing of Sara Aileen Jennings Blackburn, affectionately known to everyone as “Nana.” A pillar of love, kindness, and unfaltering support, Sara left this earthly realm to join her mother and father, Sara and Fred, her Aunt Nannie, and her brothers, Fred and Wayne, in Heaven.

Born to a loving family on May 22nd, 1956, Sara grew up in a household that emphasized the values of compassion and community-qualities she carried with her throughout her life. As a dedicated wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and friend, Sara’s selfless love touched everyone who knew her. Her warm embrace was a refuge, her laughter was infectious, and her sweet gentle spirit was a joy to all she met.

She leaves behind a legacy of love and enduring relationships, particularly with her devoted husband of forty-two years, Rex. Together, they built a life filled with joy and purpose, and instilled these same values in their children: Jonathon and his husband Chris, Matthew and his wife Candice, Marc and his wife Kaitlin, and Hunter and his wife Laura.

A proud and loving grandmother, Sara cherished every moment with her grandchildren: Addison, Alexis, Raeleigh, Deacon, Brooks, and Bryce. Her beautiful, kind spirit will continue to live on in them and the future generations of the Blackburn family.

Sara is also survived by her sisters, Susan Hagan and Kathy Jernigan (Cecil), sister-in-law Marilyn, brother Lee (Susan), mother-in-law Myrtle (“Granny”), sister-in-law Linda, sister-in-law Kathy Blackburn, cousin Kim Carlson, and her nieces MaryAnn Jennings, Laura Jennings, Caitlin Jennings, Kaye Jernigan, Sydney Jernigan, Meghan Stackhouse, Natalie Stroman, and many great nieces and nephews.

In life, Sara was an active and beloved member of her community, particularly her congregation at Gonzalez Baptist Church, where her devout faith and warm spirit lifted up all those around her. Her absence will be felt deeply within this community and many others.

The family would like to extend their heartfelt gratitude to the pallbearers, nephews Scott Jernigan, Robert Jernigan, Philip Jernigan, Steven Jennings, Sawyer Jernigan, Fred Jennings, Chris Jennings, Mike Jennings, and Andy Blackburn, along with Chad Hetherington and David Gaines, for their love and support. Special thanks to honorary pallbearers Joe Murphy, KC Fehl, Packy Mitchell, Terry Smith, Gary Peters, and Jeff Hoffman for their enduring friendship and care for Sara.

As we mourn the loss of a remarkable woman, we also celebrate her beautiful life, knowing she is at peace, embraced by the love that she so generously gave throughout her life. Sara will be       remembered with immense love and affection by her family, friends, and community. We are all better for having known her, and her spirit will continue to inspire us all. Sara loved her weekly bowling league family, her Ransom Middle School family and special friends Richard, Mary, Joe, Nubia, and Terrie, and her choir family at Gonzalez Baptist.

The family asks that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made in Sara’s name to her beloved Gonzalez Baptist Church Choir, Covenant Care, or UAB Gift Records (specify Alzheimer’s Research).

We invite all who knew and loved Sara to join us in celebrating her remarkable life and legacy. There will be a visitation for family at Gonzalez Baptist Church on Saturday, September 9th from 11:00-12:00, and a general visitation from 12:00-2:00. A funeral service to honor Sara’s life will be held at 2PM, followed by a committal service at Gonzalez Methodist Church. Following the service, a reception will be held at Gonzalez Baptist Church for all who would like to attend.

Sara may have left this world, but she will forever remain in our hearts. Hers was the very definition of a life well-lived.

Rest in Peace, Nana. We love you always and forever.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

Faith Chapel Funeral Home North is entrusted with arrangements.


One Response to “Sara Blackburn (‘Nana’)”

  1. Terrie McDaniel on September 9th, 2023 9:25 am

    My girls and I were part of Sarah’s “Ransom Family” for as many years as our children were students (and then some!). I can see her now at the RMS Front Office assisting, smiling, and providing a guiding hand to everyone who walked through the doors. Her life was indeed one well lived. My love and concern goes to all her family, and even those I never met. I know her sons will keep her memory alive and exemplify the values which she taught them.

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