Beloved Jackson County citizen and Emergency Management Agency Director Felix Jackson passed away Monday night at approximately 10 p.m. after suffering a medical emergency, according to a Facebook post by the Jackson County EMA. Since the news of his passing, there has been an outpouring of love and support for Jackson and his family.
Friend and coworker Paul Smith described Jackson as “the best guy in the world.”
“Felix had a heart of gold,” said Smith. “He felt personally responsible for the safety of everybody in the county, and he worked every day to that end.”
Smith said he never met a soul that didn’t like Felix Jackson. He also said Jackson got 10 years’ worth of work accomplished during the two years he was EMA director.
Jackson grew up the Stevenson community of Cedar Switch. He graduated from North Jackson High School in 1990 and earned a scholarship to play football at The University of Alabama. He would later graduate from UA in 1994 with a degree in history and political science, moving home after school and settling into work.
Jackson County Probate Judge Victor Manning was also a close friend of Jackson and said his passing does not feel real. He said one of the most striking things about Jackson was how big his heart was.
“The Felix you saw was the Felix you got,” said Manning. “He truly cared about people.”
Manning said Jackson was full of life and he loved to have fun. Jackson knew people all over the place and if he didn’t know someone, he would make it a point to get to know them.
Manning remembers sitting around and “shooting the bull” while having lunch with Jackson at the EMA office. The two loved to poke fun at each other, and Manning especially remembers their “heated discussions” about Alabama football.
Jackson ran in the 2012 primary election for a spot as the democratic nominee for District 2 on the Jackson County Commission. He and fellow candidate Sheila Cornelison both made it to the runoff election in April 2012. Jackson lost the primary election by only 166 votes.
Jackson County Commission Chairman Tim Guffey said Jackson was a good man and great for the EMA. Guffey said Jackson was “part of the family” and that he will be missed.
Guffey said the commission would be in no rush to find a replacement for Jackson, that they would get through this tough time and then make a decision.
After serving as EMA Deputy Director, Jackson was named Director on Dec. 27, 2017. He also served as a reserve deputy for the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office.