Jo Nell Neill Blackwelder (7-16-17) service 7-19-17
Jo Nell Neill Blackwelder, of Savannah, departed this life on Sunday, July 16, at the age of 88 years, 11 months and 16 days.
Born on Aug. 3, 1928, to Cornelia Jane Solomon Neill and Dewey Andrew “Dude” Neill, she grew up in the Burnt Church community. She married James W. “Tud” Blackwelder on July 2, 1948, and together in 1957, they founded Blackwelder’s Termite Control. After Mr. Blackwelder’s death in 1980, Jo Nell (the “bug lady”) continued working at Blackwelder’s until she retired at age 80.
Known for her excellence in bookkeeping, she had also worked for Shackelford Funeral Directors, Ray May Motors, and Blount Construction. In previous years, she served as secretary-treasurer for The Hardin County Band Boosters and The Neill Cemetery Association.
Mrs. Blackwelder was a member of First Baptist Church for many years, where she loved singing in the choir and teaching the senior adult ladies’ Sunday school class.
She is survived by her daughter, Dr. Judy Neill Blackwelder, of Nashville; and Cuddles, her miniature schnauzer. “Aunt Jo” is also survived by several nieces and nephews whom she dearly loved, including her niece, Suzanne Linville, who worked with her at Blackwelder’s Termite Control for 28 years and was instrumental in assisting with her care over the last several years.
In addition to her husband and parents, Mrs. Blackwelder was preceded in death by sisters, Maedell Russell, Hazel Crotts, Elizabeth Hulen; and twin brothers, Lloyd T. and Floyd B. Neill; nephews, Bruce Hulen and Ronnie Neill.
To honor her memory, contributions may be made to The Alzheimer’s Association, The American Heart Association or The Hardin County Humane Association.
Services were held on Wednesday, July 19, at 1 p.m., at Shackelford Funeral Directors of Savannah with Rev. Tony Polk officiating. Burial followed in Neill Cemetery at Savannah.