Beatrice Irene Heath

Beatrice Irene Heath

April 26, 1917 -

June 24, 2014

Beatrice "Irene" Heath, 97, of Pensacola, FL, passed peacefully from this world, in her sleep, on the morning of 24 June 2014. She was preceded in death by, and is now reunited with--the love of her life--her husband of 76 years, Arvel "Mickey" Heath, parents Walter Scott and Lula Mae McLean, her sister, Georgia Lucile Severy, her brother, George Walter McLean, her son, Donald Heath, and others dear to her heart. Irene's conviction never faltered as she gave a life of love and caring to her family, the Red Cross, to her church family, and to her community.

Irene, faithful, devoted Navy wife and loving mother, exemplifying the role of homemaker--chief cook and bottle washer, seamstress, beautician/barber, healer of all things hurtful--until the children were grown, was involved with the PTA throughout school years, proudly served the American Red Cross at the Navy Hospital Pensacola, from 1960 through 2003, and worked part-time in several notions departments to support her sewing hobby. She loved people, and was a stranger to none.

Irene's various interests included horseback riding, dancing, crabbing (our little mommy was a real saint at cleaning blue crabs--and made the best crab cakes ever!), and fishing--especially floundering in November (where she was known, on several occasions, to fall out of the boat with all her gear on). She also enjoyed sewing and her African violets.

Irene leaves to cherish her memory, her daughters Sylvia O'Camb, Loretta (Charlie) Rhodes, and Christy Heath, eleven grandchildren, great grandchildren, great-great grandchildren, and her nieces, nephews, extended family, and friends. Her absence will leave an empty place in our lives, but her unconditional love will fill our hearts forever.

Visitation will be at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church, 10:00 am with the funeral service immediately following at 11:00 am on Monday, 30 June 2014. Interment will follow the service at Barrancas National Cemetery, NAS Pensacola at 12:30 pm.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions be made in memory of Irene, to the Council on Aging, Northwest FL (Adult Day Health Care Center), Emerald Coast Hospice (Pensacola and Panama City), Covenant Hospice IPU Wing at Bay Medical (Panama City), or Pleasant Grove Baptist Church.

We would like to extend a very special thank you to all the caregivers--especially our "adopted" sister and Godsend, Christina ("Tina") Varazo-Gill--but also want to thank Marianthe Brown, Tushima "Nikki" Williams, the Council on Aging, Northwest FL (Adult Day Health Care Center), Emerald Coast Hospice (Pensacola and Panama City), and Covenant Hospice IPU Wing at Bay Medical (Panama City) for loving care and support, to the staff at Eastern Gate Memorial Gardens for facilitating funeral arrangements, and to Pleasant Grove Baptist Church for never-ending love. Thank you, friend, for celebrating Irene's life with us.

Crossing over...

Oh, please don't feel guilty

It was just my time to go.

I see you are still feeling sad,

And the tears just seem to flow.

We all come to earth for our lifetime,

And for some it's not many years

I don't want you to keep crying

You are shedding so many tears.

I haven't really left you

Even though it may seem so.

I have just gone to my heavenly home,

And I'm closer to you than you know.

Just believe that when you say

my name, I'm standing next to you,

I know you long to see me,

But there's nothing I can do.

But I'll still send you messages

And hope you understand,

That when your time comes to

"cross over," I'll be there to take your hand.

Express your condolences in our guestbook at


Funeral Home

Eastern Gate Memorial Funeral Home
1985 West Nine Mile Road Pensacola, FL 325349377
(850) 479-9223

Published in Pensacola News Journal on June 29, 2014