July 27, 1919 – July 20, 2020
My darling Mother, Mrs. Freda Crabtree, went home to her Lord and Savior July 20th, 2020, at the age of 100, exactly one week shy of her 101st birthday.
She was born in Jacksonville, Florida to George and Lillian Padgett and grew up on Herschel Street with her sister Georgia and Brother GW (George Jr). She graduated from Robert E Lee High School and went on to Florida Southern College in Lakeland, where she fell in love with education. She returned to Jacksonville and was one of the first cadets to teach at Annie Lytle School # 4. Mom also earned her Masters in Education via correspondence from FSU. She loved her children and thrived teaching 3rd grade. She eventually spent most of her teaching career at Hendricks Avenue Elementary and Love Grove Elementary, retiring after 42 years. In the evenings I would help her organize next weeks plans, etc. If there was ever a child with a need my Mom was there to find a way to help.
Among her loves, besides educating children, she taught Ladies Bible Study at San Jose Baptist for many years and loved to cook. She was known well for her sweet potato casserole and famous for her handmade chocolate eclairs, and wherever I worked she always showed up with a batch...many colleagues following her from the elevator to the floor where she was delivering them.
After her retirement, she and my husband found a piece of property in Palm Valley they fell in love with and worked every day together clearing, burning, and fishing. My husband built her a darling home and she enjoyed it there for 16 years. We called each other the Three Musketeers. Here, she really enjoyed retirement and her daily visits to the Senior Center to play bingo and exercise. We cooked fish, picked blue crabs for crab cakes, and enjoyed the wonderful abundant flowers and citrus trees on the property. Later on, her favorite was sitting on the porch, watching the boats go by, and allowing her “musketeers” to indulge her with champagne and stone crabs, her all-time favorite.
Mom is predeceased by her Mother, Father, Sister and Brother, many Aunts and Uncles, and many cousins. She is survived by her very devoted daughter, Celeste Burger, son-in-law John F Burger III (Jeff), and two grand doggies, Elle and Brando, who now reside in St. Augustine.
A Funeral Service will be held celebrating Mom’s life inside the Chapel of Hardage-Giddens Greenlawn Funeral Home on her birthday, Monday, July 27th at 11 a.m., with Pastor Terry Gore officiating, followed by interment at Greenlawn Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers please consider donations to: Tom Coughlin Jay Fund www.tcjayfund.org, PO Box 50798, Jacksonville Beach, FL 32240 or Franklin Street Baptist Church, 2521 Franklin Street, Jacksonville, FL 32206.
Monday, July 27, 2020
July 24, 2020
I only knew your mother for a couple of years but will never forget her infectious laugh, how she was always smiling and our last conversation, about all the different inventions throughout her lifetime. ( there were many !). She was very entertaining! May peace be with you. - Dale
OTIS & Meocia Baxter
July 24, 2020
My dearest Freda, you will always be my sunshine. My life truly changed the first day I met you, never thought I could love someone outside of my immediate family the way I loved you. You will always be my 100 year old baby. Love MiMi Baxter 💕