Barbara L. McKay-Ancrum, a retired juvenile probation officer, died on Sunday, May 1, 2022. She was 75.
She was born on May 26, 1946, in Williamson, West Virginia, and was the second of five children born to the late Robert and Zelda McKay.
She was introduced to Christ at an early age, and in 1979 she was baptized by Pastor Horace Sheppard Sr. at West Oak Lane Church of God, now known as Bethesda Christian Fellowship Church of God. She remained there until her passing. During her later years, she became a praise dancer at church and was a member of the 76ers Senior Dance Team, Silver Sneakers.
McKay-Ancrum was educated in the Philadelphia public school system. After graduating from South Philadelphia High School, she attended Temple University and received her degree in social work. During her time at Temple, she was able to study abroad in Colombia and became fluent in Spanish, which helped in her work as a juvenile probation officer.
She gave birth to her first child, John, in 1964. At the age of 27, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent surgery. She was told she would never have another child and was urged to get a hysterectomy. She overcame cancer, gave birth to her second child in 1977, and was able to nurse the infant successfully. On Feb. 17, 1986, she married Mark Ancrum and gained three additional children, Asha, Thema and Hakim.
McKay-Ancrum was committed to her job as a juvenile probation officer and took an interest in the children as if they were her own. She volunteered at Girard College and the Cub Scouts, and after retirement continued working with children and volunteered with the School District of Philadelphia as a foster grandparent.
She also enjoyed traveling and shopping.
She was preceded in death by her siblings, Shirley, Cornell and Tommy.
In addition to her husband, she is survived by her children, John, Jamal (Erilda), Asha (Sherrodd), Thema and Hakim (Yahnee); sister, Yvonne; stepmother, Carrie McKay; stepsister, Rhonda; stepbrothers, Derrick and Jerome; sisters-in-law, Rose and Sharon; nine grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and other family members and friends.
Services were held on Saturday, May 7, at Bruce R. Hawkins Funeral Home.