"What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us." - Helen Keller
Brenda Barclay Jones of Cary, NC passed away peacefully on Friday, August 28, 2015 after a valiant battle with cancer.
Brenda was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother, and loving friend to everyone she knew. Her caring and compassionate spirit touched many, and she had the unique ability to make people feel loved and lifted in her presence. As someone who genuinely cared for those around her and often put the needs of family and friends before her own, we will never forget her warmth and selflessness. And most of all, we will never forget her beautiful smile.
Brenda was born in Decatur, GA to James C. and Pearl Wilbanks Barclay on December 20, 1948. She graduated from Gordon High School in 1966. In June of 1968, she married her high school sweetheart, Michael A. Jones, also of Decatur, GA.
Brenda completed nursing school in 1971, and during Mike's service with the U.S. Navy, she worked at hospitals in Connecticut, Idaho and California. In 1974, they settled in Wilmington, NC where Brenda worked as a home health nurse while raising their three children, David, Craig and Christen. After relocating to Cary, NC in 1994, Brenda went back to school and completed a B.S. in Nursing from NC Central University in 1998. Shortly after, she became a Board Certified Pediatric Nurse, and began working with a federal HeadStart program that served migrant families and children along the east coast. She worked there for nearly fifteen years until her retirement in 2013.
Brenda enjoyed gardening, sewing, reading, traveling, and most of all, spending time with her family. Brenda's strength, her faith in God, and the love and prayers of family, friends and many supporters carried her through the past two years since her cancer diagnosis. She refused to let cancer or treatments hold her back from what she loved. On weekends, she could typically be seen on the sidelines of her granddaughters' soccer games. She also traveled to California as often as she could to spend time with and watch her grandsons play soccer, baseball and t-ball. She also enjoyed volunteering with children at her daughter's workplace, InterAct, a nonprofit, domestic violence agency in Raleigh, NC.
Brenda is predeceased by her parents, James and Pearl Barclay.
Brenda is survived by her husband Michael; her sons David (Caroline) and Craig (Michelle); her daughter Christen; her grandchildren Eliza, Stewart, Katherine, Kaitlyn, Griffin, Noah, Adam and Asher; her brother Tom Barclay (Ermena); her sister, Sharon Barclay; and her nephews Chris Barclay and Josh Barclay.
Visitation will be held at Brown-Wynne Funeral Home in Cary, NC on, September 2, 2015 from 6:00-8:00 pm. A Celebration of Life service will be held at St. Francis United Methodist Church in Cary on September 3, 2015 at 2:00 pm. We ask guests to wear bright colors to services to honor the sunshine and brightness that Brenda brought to our lives.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to one of Brenda's favorite causes: Save the Children (www.savethechildren.org); or InterAct (www.interactofwake.org), where her daughter, Christen, works.
The family wishes to extend their gratitude to Transitions Life Care for their support in Brenda's final days, and also to Duke's, UNC's and MD Anderson's Cancer Centers for their dedication and care during her treatment.
Condolences may be sent to the family through