Elizabeth Jennett Brannon, 95, went home to heaven on Christmas Eve morning, December 24, 2020. She often said we should “Hear everywhere the rush of angel wings,” and she was ready when they came for her. Following one of her own mottos, she died as she lived, from “can until can’t.”
Elizabeth was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Dr. Edwin Simpson Brannon, Jr.; her parents, Lousie Harper Jennett Henderson and Benjamin Franklin Jennett; her brother, Benjamin F. Jennett, Jr; her son Thomas Neal Brannon; her daughter-in-law Johnnie (Jenkie) Sue Brannon (Edwin); and her granddaughter Jennette Sims Brannon.
She is survived by her son Edwin S. Brannon III; her daughter Elizabeth (Beth) J. Brannon; her granddaughter, Julie Chisolm (John); and her niece, Martha Ann Jennett.
Elizabeth was born on October 20, 1925, in West Blocton, Alabama. She was graduated from Phillips High School in Birmingham in 1943 and then attended The University of Alabama School of Nursing. She planned to be a U.S. Army nurse, but WWII, thankfully, ended before she could do so. In 1947, she married her husband, Edwin, whom she met on a blind date. A friend said he was a confirmed bachelor, but Elizabeth said, “We’ll just see about that.” She remained his devoted wife until his death in 2009.
Interior design and antiques were Elizabeth’s passion, and she loved helping others decorate their homes, including her friends Mary Harmon and Paul (Bear) Bryant. She had her own radio show, Woman to Woman, where she answered decorating questions from listeners, and she worked at her friend Joan Ingram’s shop, Antiques and Accessories.
Elizabeth was active in many civic endeavors in Tuscaloosa, including the Junior Welfare Association (later the Junior League), where she worked on the Annual Tuscaloosa Charity Horse Show, serving as its chairman in 1964. She was a member of the Tuscaloosa Preservation Society and worked on the restoration of the Battle-Friedman House. She was a member, and served in officer positions, of the 6th District Dental Auxiliary and the Astra Study Club. Later, she devoted more than 20 years teaching her beloved Naomi Scott Sunday School class at Calvary Baptist Church.
Elizabeth was a wonderful storyteller, and was able to vividly recount her adventures, such as the time when an aunt took her to see President Franklin D. Roosevelt when he came by train to Jasper, Alabama, for the funeral of U.S. Senator William Brockman Bankhead in 1940. In later years she traveled to Ireland, England, and France, but New York City, where she walked across the Brooklyn Bridge at the age of 85, was her favorite destination.
Elizabeth had fond remembrances of the many friends in her life, including Faye Wood, Elon Hamner, Joan Ingram, Marlene Brown, and Hannah Brock. She leaves behind many others, including Nelda DeLoach, Wendy Wells, Katie Clark, Lesley Jarrett Wolfe, and Dianne Bragg.
Elizabeth’s Bible was well-worn, and one of her favorite verses was Romans 8:28, “All things are possible for those who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose.” She always looked for purpose in her life and hoped heaven would allow her to watch over those she would leave behind.
Because of current COVID safety concerns, there will not be a public service or visitation. Her family wishes to express their deep gratitude to all who visited, called, and cared for her, especially after her husband had died. Honorary pallbearers will be her dear neighbors on Glendale Gardens. She often said that if she searched the world over, she could not have found a home with better neighbors. Elizabeth loved animals, and in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her memory to the Humane Society of West Alabama.
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