On May 28, 1955 Jo Ann Sims Harris, a woman of strong values and simplicity was born to the
late Otis and Lizzie Mae Sims in Abernant, Alabama.
At an early age, Jo Ann accepted Christ as her Lord and Savior. Upon baptism, she joined First
Baptist Church Abernant, Alabama under the pastorage of Reverend E. J. James.
During her early childhood, she had an eagerness to learn and excelled while attending school
in Coaling, Holt and Brookwood, Alabama. In 1973, she graduated from Brookwood High
School in Brookwood, Alabama and immediately enrolled at Bessemer State Technical College
in Bessemer, Alabama. Successfully, and in record time, she received a Business Certificate.
After reaching this personal goal and turning point, Jo Ann took a leap of faith and moved to
San Bernardino, CA to pursue her business career in 1988. After 23 years, she returned to
Abernant, Alabama and reunited with First Baptist Church Abernant under the pastorage of
Elder Tommie Foster where she served on the usher board.
Jo Ann life was fulfilling; she lived it with love and value; she was a woman of great spirit; she
was filled with compassion; she had a great sense of humor; she loved life and she welcomed
the opportunity to encourage others.
Our beloved Jo Ann retired to glory on November 25, 2020 and took a seat in Our Father’s
heavenly home where she can live forever through Christ. Many predeceased loved ones
celebrated her arrival.
Precious memories of Jo Ann will continue to linger in the hearts of those she loved and
cherished her: two sons, Darius Harris of San Bernadine, CA; Deshawn Cleveland of
Birmingham, AL; two brothers, Otis (Jan) Sims of Bessemer, AL; Danny (Annette) Sims of
Atlanta, GA; one sister, Pearl Angel Sims of Abernant, AL; a special granddaughter, Toneshia
Harris; thirty-eight grandchildren; four great grandchildren; one uncle, Jonathan Davis of
Abernant, AL; four aunts, Rosebud Gholston, Annette Zeigler and Ida Campbell of
Birmingham, AL; Shirley Walker of Bessemer, AL and a host of nieces, nephews, other
relatives and friends.