1952 ~ 2021
Date of Death: November 23, 2021
In profound sadness, the staff of Veasley Funeral Home & Cremations, Inc. want to express our sincere condolences to the Norwood family. Sharon’s earthly temple is now resting in the care of Rowell-Parish Mortuary. Revelations 21:4 says "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death; nor sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain, for the former things are passed away." Be assured that in the days ahead you will surely gain strength from the memories of Ms. Sharon B. Norwood.
Derrick Veasley ~ Director
Henry Veasley ~ Director
Pastor E.C. Maltbia ~ Chaplain
Sharon Blanche O’Neal Norwood was born the fourth child of five siblings to Clarence and Almeda O’Neal on Wednesday, November 14, 1952 in Hannah, Wyoming. The Lord called her home to her eternal rest on Tuesday, November 23, 2021. She was 69 years old.
Sharon professed her faith in Jesus Christ in early adulthood and was baptized on the same day as her oldest daughter at Bible Baptist Church in Sapulpa, Oklahoma. She grew as a Christian over the years and eventually became a member of Greater Pilgrim Rest Missionary Baptist Church where her husband and his family were deeply rooted. She remained a member for the rest of her life and did her best to allow the love of God and His Holy light to shine through her for all to see.
Sharon grew up and was educated in Fort Smith, Arkansas where she attended Darby Junior High School and Northside High School. She was a shy girl who blended into the background not wanting excess attention in any way. And those who were willing to put forth a small effort, soon found out that she possessed one of the kindest and most gentle personalities; a rare commodity in this hateful world. The cruelty of people always injured her soul as if it was her own personal experience. You would be hard-pressed to find a person with more empathy and compassion anywhere.
Sharon married young and at the tender age of 19, she gave birth to her first child, a beautiful baby girl, with curls like Shirley Temple, who she named: Amanda, after her own mother’s middle name. Those who knew and loved the child would call her Amy. Also, at a young and tender age, Amy brought into the world her first grandchild: Isiah. She was in the delivery room when he was born and carried him to the nursery herself. Isiah was the only grandchild for nine years and he spent so much time with his Nanny that they were inseparable for most of his childhood. She called him Iker Biker. He always loved to aggravate her and get her going because he grew to be so much taller than her. When he grew up, he married and fathered her only two great-grandchildren: Aubriana and Kaedyn; she was just as enrapt with his children as she had been with him. You could see her face just light up any time they came into the house. Joy would just beam from her whole person.
Next came Robert. She wanted Amy to name him Sampson so intensely. But Amy, being the hopeless romantic she was, refused, naming him after his father. She was so happy that, after some confusion and a bit of drama, she was able to carry this grandson from the delivery room to the nursery and once she saw him; she would forever think of him as her Little Indian Papoose. He had a bit of trouble with the letters S and F when he began talking, and he would grin at her and tell her, “YOU SO SUNNY NANNY!!!”, every time she would make him laugh. This always made her day. It didn’t matter how many times he said it, she would glow with love for him. He grew up to be a fine young man and she always thought of him and loved him so dearly.
Thirteen months and three days later, Tristen arrived. He was different in so many ways from the other two. He was more like her. He was shy and sweet, and introverted. They had a bond and connection so precious that he never left her. He was with her doing everything he could to help her and Larry as their health declined. She was also so happy to know that he was there watching out for her beloved husband, once she was unable to do it herself. He was with her for her last birthday, and she never stopped smiling the entire time they were together celebrating.
Sadly, Amy went to her eternal rest before her mother or her three sons. On June 11, 2018 even with her own health declining, as only one of the great mothers could do, she held her child’s hand as she witnessed the last breath Amy ever took. That takes strength, the likes of which most of us could ever imagine was possible.
When her marriage with Amy’s father did not last, she met the man she would cherish and adore for the rest of her life. She was 21 years old. His name was Larry, and he was her husband for over 40 years. Larry loved her and her daughter deeply and raised Amy as his own. In 1977, her youngest daughter, Jackie was born and shortly after, the family relocated to Sapulpa, Oklahoma. Jackie, at the very un-tender age of 32, mothered her only granddaughter: Maggie, and she became a YaYa. She was crazy about the little girl calling her, “My Miracle Baby” because no one, including Jackie, ever thought she would have any children. She taught Maggie to read and tie her shoes before she started kindergarten and Maggie would paint her lovely fingernails for the rest of her days. They both loved being girls together and the two of them enjoyed it greatly.
Over the years, Sharon worked many different jobs but her most important role was as a wife, mother, grandmother, and friend. She lovingly helped care for her mother-in-law: Hazel, as her health faltered. Their relationship was so sweet and rare to see between in-laws. She became one of Hazel’s daughters and she gained a second mother.
Other than her family, everyone knew Sharon loved ELVIS PRESLEY, WRESTLING, and BINGO. She enjoyed all music and passed this on to her daughters taking them out “cruising” just to ride and listen to the radio. They would all three sing their hearts out together and even though it may not have been pleasing to the ear; it was always pleasing to their hearts. She was gracious, and forgiving, and a champion of the underdog. She believed EVERYONE deserved to be loved and accepted for exactly who they were, warts and all. She also had the ferocity of a mother bear should anyone mean any harm to anyone she loved and cared for. And wasn’t afraid to stand up for what she thought was right, regardless of anyone’s opinion. She was dynamite in a small package with a fuse that it was never wise to ignite.
Sharon was the living breathing embodiment of unconditional love. Ever humble; every selfless. She took everyone to her heart and kept them there whether they were her blood or not. She never gave herself the credit for all she taught us about how a woman should live, love and nurture. May we honor her memory every day by trying to follow her example. Let’s love one another and hold on trusting in God no matter how difficult the roads we choose may appear to be, just keep going “forward, never straight” and remember, “It be-s that way sometimes”. We will love you and miss you forever. See ya later, Bye.
Visitation will be Friday, December 3, 2021 from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturday, December 4, 2021 from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. at Rowell-Parish Mortuary 611 North 9th Street Fort Smith, Arkansas 72901.