Cover photo for Anna Belle Briggs Johnson's Obituary
1926 Anna Belle 2023

Anna Belle Briggs Johnson

October 28, 1926 — May 19, 2023

Birmingham, Alabama

Anna Belle Briggs Johnson, 96, of Birmingham AL, drew her last breath May 19, 2023. She was born to Nuna B. Briggs and Louise Paasch on Oct. 28,1926 in Bay City, TX. Her husband, Emmett R Johnson, preceded her in death in 2011 after 60 years of marriage. Their children survive: Gay Lynn Johnson and Galen Malcolm Johnson who live in Birmingham. Her only grandchild, Barbara, and her husband Thomas Gardner live in Austin TX. Of Anna Belle’s five siblings only Gene Briggs, age 81, of Lake Jackson, TX now lives.

As a new high school graduate in 1944, Anna Belle read in the newspaper about a public health program, Cadet Nurse Corps, recruiting nurses to address the shortage caused by the war. Anna Belle said Baylor Hospital’s school of nursing “opened her world”. As a newly certified RN, she moved to Waco, TX to work in the student infirmary while studying for her BSN at Baylor University. She returned to the large hospital setting in Dallas and life immediately changed when she met Emmett. Theirs was a three month courtship. So in love they didn’t wait for a summer wedding. Mother took her first plane ride to Chicago and they went straight to the pastor’s study to get married.  Emmett’s classmates stood as witnesses. Anna Belle worked while Emmett completed his masters degree at Northwestern for hospital administration. 

With opportunities of expanded responsibilities, invitations from Baptist hospitals came asking for Emmett's servant leadership in Paducah KY, Jacksonville FL, Amarillo TX and then in 1975 from Birmingham Baptists. As a dedicated wife, homemaker, and mother, she considered herself an enabler in the journey for Emmett’s passion to offer patient care as service to God and community.

With each move they joined a local church which supported family life and community involvement. At times she worked in the nursery, volunteered on missions committees, taught preteens in Sunday School, or served as camp nurse for church camps. In Birmingham she was a faithful member of Mountain Brook Baptist Church and Hope Sunday School Class and its monthly Third Monday Book Club. She enjoyed Kenilworth, a literary club, the Cherokee Bend Garden Club, and supporting Samford students with the Legacy League. Anna Belle was a great cook, avid early morning walker at Eastwood Mall, gardener, and lover of travel—from tent camping out west to international trips.

A celebration of life will be held in the Chapel of Mountain Brook Baptist Church, Friday, May 26, at 1PM with visitation to follow there in Hudson Hall. In lieu of flowers for tribute, consider a gift to MBBChurch, Samford’s Legacy League, or to The Baptist Health Foundation.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Anna Belle Briggs Johnson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Viewing

Thursday, May 25, 2023

9:00am - 4:00 pm (Central time)

Currie-Jefferson Funeral Home & Memorial Gardens

2701 John Hawkins Pkwy, Hoover, AL 35244

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Viewing

Friday, May 26, 2023

10:00am - 1:00 pm (Central time)

Currie-Jefferson Funeral Home & Memorial Gardens

2701 John Hawkins Pkwy, Hoover, AL 35244

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Friday, May 26, 2023

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

Mountain Brook Baptist Church

3631 Montevallo Road, Birmingham, AL 35213

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