Mildred Mallard Jenkins, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, and friend, died peacefully April 5, 2013 in the home where she was born over 93 years ago. She was one of 11 children of William Grover and Hattie Banks Mallard, living most of her life in Jones County. After the death of her mother, she took on the role of primary caregiver for her younger siblings, beginning a life marked by service to others.
At 22, she married Manley Jenkins, a union lasting over 58 years until his death in early 2000. For over 25 years, they lived on a small farm just south of New Bern where they raised their four children. In addition to being a homemaker and mother, she worked for many years at Belk Department Store in downtown New Bern. In 1976, she and Manley moved to the family farm in Jones County where they lived together for the rest of their lives. Her service to the community and devotion to family was well known and recognized by being twice named Jones County "Homemaker of the Year." She loved to garden and care for her beautiful yard, and was also quite a seamstress, making clothes for her family and friends alike. In her later years, she enjoyed travelling on Forever Young tours led by her sister.
Mildred was devoted to her family and enjoyed the blessings of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, all of whom she loved dearly and was immensely proud. "Let me tell you about my grandchildren" is on the license plate of her car...and she meant it!
She loved music, playing piano from an early age and singing alto in the church choir. She also served as pianist at Friendship Free Will Baptist Church for 30 years, continuing to play into her 80’s. She passed along her gift and love of music to her children and grandchildren. Hearing them sing and laugh together during frequent visits to the family farm was among the many blessings she never took for granted.
She is survived by her daughter Martha Bernabeo (Rick); sons, Ron Jenkins (Susan); Don Jenkins(Ann); Dan Jenkins(Claire Hageman); grandchildren, Jeff Bernabeo, Jennifer Gill, Karen Fortier, Chris Jenkins, Stephen Jenkins, Elizabeth Boone, Maria Gunn; great-grandchildren, Mark, Macon, and Macy Boone, Zachary Bernabeo, and Isabella Fortier; and her sister, Bertha Brown. She was preceded in death by her husband, Manley Jenkins and grandson, Patrick Jenkins.
Funeral services will be held 11:00 am, Monday, April 8, 2013 at Friendship Free Will Baptist Church with Pastor Don Fader officiating. Visitation will be Sunday, April 7th from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at Pollock-Best Funeral Home. Online condolences at www.pollockbest.com.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Friendship Free Will Baptist Church C/O Ellis Banks PO Box 9, Pollocksville, NC 28573 or The Manley and Mildred Mallard Jenkins Endowment Fund at Mt. Olive College, 634 Henderson St., Mount Olive, NC 28365.