Mildred Jernigan Croft, of Valdosta, died on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 at her residence. Born in Lowndes County to the late Archie Daniel & Daisy Lee Jones Jernigan, she had been a lifelong resident of this area. Mildred grew up in Lowndes County in a large, close-knit family who taught her from an early age the importance of working hard on the farm in order to survive. After attending Naylor High School, it wasn’t long before Mildred met Ira Gene Croft and they were married in December of 1956. They were married for 32 years until his death in 1988. During those years, for more than a decade, the Crofts worked at the Minit Food Shop on South Patterson St., helping customers and working with stockmen. She was also a devoted homemaker, raising her kids to know the value of hard work and eventually spending time with grandchildren, watching TV and playing games. Mildred also enjoyed fishing and eating fish. She read the Valdosta Daily Times from cover to cover and greatly enjoyed talking to friends and family on the telephone. Taking care of her plants was also an activity she enjoyed and wouldn’t hesitate to advise others about how to care for their plants.
Survivors include three daughters and two sons in law, Debbie & Randy Walker, and Sherry Croft, all of Valdosta, and Daisy & Dwain Keen of Jacksonville; a son and daughter in law, Buster & Debb Croft of Valdosta; 8 grandchildren, Nikki (Eric) Smith, Tiffany (Kevin) Bradford, Ryan Walker, Ginny Keen, Jonathan Keen, Jake (Lacey) Croft Katie (Joseph) Tillman and Brittani Martin and 8 great grandchildren. Also surviving are a sister, Ava Nell Blanchard, a brother and sister in law, Wayne & Joann Jernigan, brother in law, Lloyd Luke and a sister in law, Joyce Croft. She is preceded in death by her husband Ira Gene Croft, 5 sisters and 3 brothers.
The funeral for Mrs. Croft will be held at 11 am on Friday, September 17, 2021, in the Chapel of Carson McLane Funeral Home. Kevin Bradford will officiate. Burial will follow beside her husband at Sunset Hill Cemetery. The family will receive friends at the funeral home on Friday morning from 10 am until service time. Flowers will be accepted or donations may be made to Georgia School of Theology, 1947 Watson Blvd., Warner Robbins, GA 31093, where her great grandsons, Jett, attends preaching school. Condolences may be conveyed to the family on the obituary page at www.mclanecares.com Carson McLane Funeral Home