Miriam Steele Jackson

April 13, 2016

Miriam Steele Jackson filled her life with blessing upon blessing. She was a wonderful wife, mother and grandmother, an avid Presbyterian who'd leave little gifts at your door - flowers, books and the like - to express her affection. Her love of children and curiosity about most everything, made her a talented teacher. And it was more the merrier when it came time to welcome guests for dinner. Her generosity in ways large and small was unceasing.

Mrs. Jackson passed away on April 13, 2016, after a period of declining health. She was 88, grateful to God for a lifetime filled with the riches that truly matter.

Mrs. Jackson was born on Dec. 2, 1927, the youngest of William Henry and Monica C. Steele's five children. She graduated from Anniston High and then Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Ga., in 1949. She began her teaching career in Talladega, Ala., before moving to Charlotte to teach at Myers Park High School. She later earned a Masters degree in Education at UNC Charlotte. Life took a golden turn when friends at Myers Park Presbyterian Church introduced her to McDaniel "Mac" Jackson. On their first dates, she was content to watch him work on fix-it projects in his garage shop. They were married on Sept. 18, 1954, and spent 60 glorious years together until his death on Oct. 11, 2014, at age 96.

Mrs. Jackson enjoyed a flourishing career teaching at several Charlotte-area schools for 20 years, including Country Day and Eastover Elementary, taking time out to raise their five children. Science was her favorite subject. Before she was married, she taught for a year in Japan. She also spent three summers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts in the 1980's. Such was her passion for learning, she lived there alone in an old barn that had been converted into apartments - auditing classes, watching scientists at work, soaking up everything she could.

Mrs. Jackson was active for more than 60 years at Myers Park Presbyterian Church, teaching Sunday School, acting as a youth advisor, singing in the choir and serving as an Elder. When the Jacksons moved to the Aldersgate Methodist retirement community in 2006, she helped launch a Presbyterian group that continues sharing faith and fellowship. She devoted herself as well to the Junior League, Lake Rabun Association and was a proud member of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Mrs. Jackson loved cooking big meals for family and friends, many of whom knew her as Mim. She couldn't get enough of gardening, and being outdoors. The Jacksons had a second home in Georgia on Lake Rabun nicknamed "Neverdone" for obvious reasons. The picnic table on the lake, and the kitchen table back home in Charlotte, stayed filled with loved ones, and the sound of laughter.

Mac Jackson used to say that as long as there was gas in the car, his wife was gone. She was not one to sit at home. A friend once said, "I never get in a car with Miriam Jackson and expect to go anywhere directly. Miriam has a passion for side streets, cheap gas, odd shops and offbeat places". Their travels took them all over the world, to see the sights and collect antiques - Alaska, Europe, Scandinavia, Japan, Mexico, Korea and, her favorites, Machu Picchu in Peru and the Galapagos Islands in the Pacific Ocean. They took the family rafting down the Colorado River, took vacations from Florida to Canada in their Airstream RV, hiked Mt. Washington at night in the snow to spend New Year's with their son, and she even fit in a trip to the Kentucky Derby with her daughter that loves horses.

For a feature in the newspaper long ago, a friend used these words to capture the sweet adventure that was Miriam Jackson's life: "The horn-rimmed glasses, the wrap-around skirt, the flat Weejun sandals were all a disguise. Miriam was really Christopher Columbus."

A life of blessings indeed.

Mrs. Jackson is survived by their five children - Beth Jackson Frybarger of Charlotte, McDaniel B. "Jack" Jackson of Greensboro, William B. "Bill" Jackson of Mendocino, Calif., John S. Jackson and his wife, Lia, of Concord, and Zachariah F. "Frank" Jackson and his wife, Mary, of Atlanta. She was so proud of her children, and adored her 11 grandchildren - Mac, Thomas and Sam Jackson, the sons of Jack Jackson; Steele, Elijah, Noah, Andrew and Henry, sons of John and Lia Jackson; and Virginia, Zach and Bobby Jackson, children of Frank and Mary Jackson. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband, parents and four older siblings.

A service to celebrate her life will be at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, April 23 in the sanctuary of Myers Park Presbyterian Church, 2501 Oxford Place. Rev. Von Clemans, Associate Pastor at Myers Park Presbyterian, and Aldersgate Chaplain Karen Moore will participate in the service. The family will greet friends afterward in Providence Hall.

A gift in Mrs. Jackson's honor can be made to the Music Department at Myers Park Presbyterian Church, 2510 Oxford Place, Charlotte, N.C. 28207.

The family is deeply grateful for the love and care shared by the friends, caregivers, nurses, and staff at Aldersgate.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth Poe Funeral & Cremation Services, 1321 Berkeley Ave Charlotte NC 28204. Phone: 704 641-7606

Share your memories & condolences


  • No comments found