Anita passed away peacefully at home on June 18, 2022. A celebration of her life will take place on Thursday, June 23, 2022, at 12:00 pm, with visitation starting at 10am at Ott & Lee Funeral Home in Brandon. Burial will follow in Union Baptist Church Cemetery.
Anita was born on November 24, 1931. She was the daughter of Enos E. Ponder and Ethel Colquhoun Ponder. She spent her school years at Puckett School where she graduated in 1949. She served as class secretary. During high school, Anita played basketball with The State Board of Health Healthettes and the team played in the National AAD Tournament in Dallas, Texas. Her future husband, John Edward Means, enlisted in the Navy in 1944. After serving his country for two years, he returned to Puckett High School to graduate. Upon his return, they began their lifelong romance.
Anita grew up playing the piano in Union Baptist Church in Mayton where her father was music leader. Anita was well known for her unique and beautiful style of playing the piano and continued to play in her home for the rest of her life.
After graduating from Jackson School of Business, she began working at the Jackson Daily News. She and John Edward married on February 23, 1952 and moved to Rankin, Texas where she continued working in the newspaper business while her husband worked in oil drilling. After son Johnny and daughter Janna were born, little did she know she was about to embark on a lifetime of worldwide travel and adventure with her family.
George Bush of Zapata Offshore Drilling first sent the family to Borneo to open up drilling offshore in the South China Sea. They subsequently lived in Australia, Singapore, Germany, Canary Islands Spain, Bombay India and Abu Dhabi United Arab Emirates. Anita enjoyed life to the fullest in each country, making life long friends and devoting herself to her husband and two children. She was an avid golfer and keen bridge player. She often talked lovingly of the numerous animals the family adopted in each country.
She is preceded by her husband of 59 years, John Edward Means, Sr; her parents; five sisters, Hazel Montgomery, Faye Moore, Lola Ponder, Maxine Ponder and Yvonne Burnham; two brothers, Gary Ponder and Vernon Ponder. She is survived by son John Edward Means, Jr. Of Sacramento, CA; daughter Janna Maria Means of Puckett; two granddaughters: Leilani Meggette (Carl) of Reno, NV; Madison Jean Means of Sacramento, CA; and one great-granddaughter Shiva Meggette of Reno, NV.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Union Baptist Church Cemetery Fund. 2259 Johns Mayton Road, Brandon, MS 39042.
You may Live Stream the service at https://event.forgetmenotceremonies.com/ceremony?c=325669b1-73c3-4bd0-ba5a-5a59e8ffb98a