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Emily Jean Fortinberry

Emily Jean Fortinberry, 75, passed from this life on Oct. 18, 2022, in Ocean Springs,. She was born in Wilsonville, Ala., on March 1, 1947, to George K. and Mary Helen Baker.
A funeral service was held Oct. 22 in Wilson Funeral Home Chapel, with graveside service following in the Monticello Municipal Cemetery. Wilson Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.
She grew up in Wilsonville, attending Shelby County High School in Columbia. Jean then attended the University of Montevallo, graduating with a Bachelor of Art degree in art education. She began her teaching career in Pell City, Ala., at Duran Jr. High School, and taught art for several years. She returned to Montevallo, receiving a Master of Education degree in guidance and counseling. With that degree, Jean became Duran’s guidance counselor and served in that capacity for 21 years until her retirement in 1993.
Her very nature, combined with her education, allowed her to see nature in colorful and unique ways, which she used constantly with her passion for photography.
In 1978, Jean met and married Eugene Victor Fortinberry – the love of her life – and they began their travels, starting in the British Virgin Islands. Over the years, they traveled the United States and returned to the Islands on their 25th anniversary.
Her hobbies included gifts of annual calendars to friends and family, and recording birthdays of many people and remembering to send cards every year to all. She also raised monarch butterflies and created an interest in that hobby with many people.
Jean was a true joy to know, and her passion for art was expressed continuously.
Jean is survived by her husband of 45 years and by two stepsons, Stephan Fortinberry, of New Orleans, La.; and Brian Fortinberry, of Colorado Springs, Colo.
She will be missed by all that knew her.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Cancer Society.