It is with great sadness that we share news from one of our cherished friends. Clarice Jackson
, a leader of the Decoding Dyslexia
movement, is mourning the loss of her 24-year old daughter, Latecia Fox
a beautiful young person struck down in a senseless act of gunfire and violence in Omaha, Nebraska. The tragic incident took the lives of two other young people as well.
Clarice is a remarkable woman whose magnetism, energy and wisdom has impacted many in the learning and education field. This devastating event affects a wonderful mother and the entire community around her.
To lose a child is tragic. And our hearts break with our fellow mother, our friend.
"Help one person at a time, and always start with the person nearest you."
Mother Teresa said those words, and Clarice Jackson and Latecia Fox lived them beautifully. Here in brief is their story.
In the late 1990s, Clarice Jackson was a young reading teacher at her local elementary school. She took notice of a bright little girl who was having a very difficult time academically.
"When I first met my daughter, she came into my classroom in the second grade and the first thing she did was hug me," Jackson said. "I was sold after that."
Latecia's home life was not ideal. So, two years later, when Latecia was in the 4th grade, Clarice adopted her. Jackson remembers, “I was sitting at work one day and it was the Lord, he had a conversation with me and he said, 'Do you sit there and know that this young lady exists and do you nothing? Or do you become her voice and you speak on her behalf and help her?' ”
As her mother, Jackson soon discovered there was a reason Latecia struggled so much in school. She had dyslexia. Jackson enrolled Latecia in a private school that specializes in helping children who learn differently. It was a game-changer.
While Latecia worked at her new school, Clarice also went back to school and eventually opened the Voice Advocacy Center
in Omaha, Nebraska. The center screens children for dyslexia, and it also provides tutoring services. The entire reason for its existence is due to a former little girl who grew into a bright young woman named Latecia Fox.
“She is the very reason why I do what I do; she gave me purpose. She changed my life, she changed the life of many, many children. She is the reason the Voice Advocacy Center exists."
And Latecia lived out her mother's
example by helping others. She loved her career working in a group home for adults who have developmental disabilities.
This past weekend, our world was shaken by the news of Latecia's untimely death.
"She was too young, too full of life, too full of love to be gone too soon," Jackson said.
A memorial fund has been set up to help the family with funeral expenses
. If you would like to contribute, click to the Latecia Fox Memorial Service Fund.
In Memory and Love,
Julya Johnson and Doug Sprei
On behalf of the team at Learning Ally
These news clips offer insight into the tragic events of the weekend, as well as the beautiful work of this family:
KETV - Omaha Woman Works to Get Dyslexia Recognized in Public Schools
WOWT - Remembering Latecia Fox
KETV - Mother of Shooting Victim Calls for Justice
KETV - Mother Shares Grief After Omaha Shooting