Donna Lynne Smiley Dixon, 74, of Blackshear, passed away Sunday morning, March 14, 2021, at Landmark Hospital in Savannah.
Born in Screven June 30, 1946, she had lived in Pierce County most of her life. She was the salutatorian of the 1964 graduating class of Blackshear High School. She would go on to attend and graduate from Waycross-Ware Tech with a diploma in business technology. She wore many hats over the years, stay-at-home mom and housewife, church secretary at Emmanuel Baptist Church, secretary at the Pierce County Tax Commissioner’s Office, and the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse where she would go on to retire as their vice president. Following her retirement, she and her sister, Marian, felt called to create a Christian-based ministry that would help support our neighbors in need. After a couple of years planning, they opened The Sycamore Tree and today, ten years later, they have been able to help countless numbers of individuals and families and not only bless them but our whole community. She had a true servant’s heart and showed it not only with The Sycamore Tree but with several other organizations she worked with in our area. She loved going to the beach and being with her family and she enjoyed reading and singing. She was a faithful member of the Blackshear First Baptist Church where she was in the Workers for Christ Sunday School Class. She was also a past president of the Blackshear Rotary Club. She was dearly loved by her family and community and will be greatly missed by them all.
She was a daughter of the late Everett Prentice and Montez Tyre Smiley.
Survivors include her husband of 18 years, Jack Ferguson, Blackshear; two daughters and sons-in-law, Cynthia and Olin Lovett, Statesboro and Angel and Kevin Knowlton, Blackshear; two sons and a daughter-in-law, David and Sue Ann Dixon, Offerman and Brodie Ferguson, Rio De Janeiro, Brazil; her sister and brother-in-law, Marian and Terry Evans, Blackshear; eight grandchildren, Ryan (Kristen) Dixon, Ethan (Banks) Lovett, Courtney (Justin) Devereaux, Blaine Lovett, Skyler (James) Arnold, Tyce Lovett, Dixon Knowlton and Emma Knowlton; eight great-grandchildren; a niece, Kyler Evans, Anderson, SC and several other relatives and friends.
Visitation will take place from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, March 18, at the funeral home.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, March 19, from the First Baptist Church.
Interment will be in the Blackshear Cemetery.
The family kindly requests members of the Workers for Christ Sunday School Class as well as volunteers with The Sycamore Tree serve as honorary pallbearers. They are asked to please meet at the church by 10:30 a.m. Friday.
Due to COVID-19 and the effect it has had on this family, social distancing guidelines as well as the use of facemasks are required.
Memorials may be made to The Sycamore Tree, 204 Central Ave., Blackshear, GA 31516 or to First Baptist Church, 670 Main Street, Blackshear, GA 31516.
Sympathy may be expressed by signing the online register at www.pearsondial.com.
Pearson-Dial Funeral Home of Blackshear is in charge of arrangements.