Jocelyn D. Branham Earnest - Online Memorial Website

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Jocelyn Branham Earnest
Born in West Virginia
38 years
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Em Saying hello for a moment. August 17, 2013

It's been awhile since I've been on this site, but know that it has not been long since I've last thought of you.

I'm 23 now. Mom likes to remind me that she was that age when she had me which never fails to freak me out.

My life has changed so drastically since you went away. And although I'm changing and growing into the person I want to be, I will always be that same girl  you punched a turtle with.

I love telling that story. People's reactions are priceless.

I'm in grad school and although it has been a struggle I hope to do well. Just trying to survive it. You know how much I love school...

There are so many people in my life right now I wish you could meet. So much has changed since we last spoke. But I still have those moments when I just feel you.

Remember that day that we decided your basement was really great and that if we just cleaned the carpets and organized things and took out the trash it would be a great place to hangout? We just dropped everything after talking about it, and started working on it. Afterwards, we stopped for a break and just admired our hard work. You had this look of excitement in your eyes as we talked about the possibilities.

That's what I'm doing right now. I've decided that I'm pretty great and I have alot to offer, so I'm taking out the trash and trying to organize the mess. It has been tough and I've had setbacks but I'm working towards it.

I don't know where I'll be in the next couple years but I hope that you'll stay with me on this crazy ride.

I'm trying to go home to visit next weekend.

Look for flowers in the usual spot. 

Love always,
Christin Lawson Cousin October 11, 2012
    You have been on my mind a lot lately,and I'm back on the computer looking at your pics and reading everybody's sweet messages and memories of how you touched their lives!! I'm so proud to of the beautiful person you are  and how gracefully you lived your life! You are a perfect example of how I want my children to become! your truly missed and loved!! I know your in a beautiful place, but from down here its hard to face!
                  P.S. Tell Nan Nan I miss her too!!

Here is the poem I wrote for Mom from US today (Mother's Day 2011). I know you feel the same way......

Nine months of anticipation, waiting to be blessed.
Til you hold your little ones close to your chest.
Changing the diapers and keeping us fed,
tucking us in to our warm, cozy beds.
Reading us stories and teaching us morals,
driving us to practices of athletics and chorals.
Showing your pride as we get our degrees,
supporting us unconditionally into our thirties.
WE LOVE YOU and are proud to call you Mom.
The proof is raising two awesome children that are The Bomb!

Of course I had to add our typical card "modest touch" at the end :-) 

I love you Joce and miss you every single day.  I wish you were here to wrap your arms around Mom today and to see the precious gift I have been given to make me a Mom too.  Your nephew knows your name and your picture and as he grows he will know everything about his wonderful Aunt Goshy!  I LOVE YOU!

I was at martins food store in martinsburg today (7-3-2010) when I was leaving I noticed an  in loving memory sign on the back glass of a black car. When I read the name I couldnt believe it. I had not heard or seen that name since the early  1980's   I had the biggest crush on Jocelyn in 8th grade.  Then I get home and googled her name and I find out how she passed. I just cant believe it. Jocelyn was not into guys and dating in 8th grade , but we became very close friends and we could talk to each other about anything. She was abosultly the most caring, understanding, just the best human being you could ever hope to meet. this a really big blow to my heart. My heart and prayers go out to her family and friends. I met her mom and younger sister once or twice and its been so long ago the only close friend i can remember is Brenda. I was a total srew up in school. I was not popular at all. I was always very immature acting but  Joycelyn was such a good person she still remained to be friends with me. your friend forever       Bobby
Eagles honor Branham
Hedgesville celebrates fallen standout

RICK KOZLOWSKI / Journal sports writer POSTED: February 13, 2009

Article Photos
Standing with the retired jersey of the late Jocelyn Branham are former teammate Brenda Deter Hough, left, mother Joyce Young, sister Laura Rogers and brother-in-law Emory Rogers (Journal photo by Rick Kozlowski).

HEDGESVILLE - Her coach says he could talk all night long about Jocelyn Branham.

Branham could've scored all night long, too.

Most times the athlete who played basketball from 1984-88 at Hedgesville did, as her scoring averages of 24 points per game her junior year and 28 points her senior year attest.

Hedgesville scored one for its greatest female basketball player Thursday night at the Gilbert B. Miller Center.

The school retired jersey No. 21 for the late Branham during a between-games ceremony as the Eagles faced Martinsburg.

Family and friends, many tearful, were on hand for the short tribute that included an unveiling of the framed jersey that will hang in the gymnasium's lobby.

"There's so much kindness and love from everybody that knew Jocelyn," said her mother, Joyce Young. "That's what she was all about.

"It's a wonderful honor to have her number retired."

"We love her and miss her," Young said.

Those in attendance, teammates and classmates from the Class of 1988, chose to remember the good times for an athlete who went on to play at West Virginia University, a starting member of the Mountaineers' Sweet 16 team of 1992.

"When she told me they offered her a scholarship, that was one of my happiest days," said Denny Fiery, a Hedgesville assistant coach who was the top man the four years Branham played for the Eagles.

Fiery, fresh from coaching Martinsburg's Olympian and future pro Vicky Bullett for her first two years, came to Hedgesville and chose Branham to play point guard as a freshman. He saw exceptional skills in his athlete first off and then witnessed a work ethic, determination and discipline to be the best.

Because of all of that, Fiery said, "she became a really good player."

That's what pleased Fiery most, that Branham took none of her natural ability for granted.

"She came to play every night," he said. "Her highest scoring games were against the best teams. By the time she was a junior and a senior, we were contending for sectional crowns and regional championships, so we were playing in a lot of big games."

She earned first-team all-state honors at Hedgesville.

"She was well-liked by the whole team," Fiery said.

Branham's mother equated her athletic ability with her personality, saying, "She gave her all for Hedgesville."

Young said her daughter remained similarly resolute after graduating from West Virginia and working in Lynchburg, Va.

"She mentored a lot of kids as she got older," Young said. "She mentored a lot of kids in Virginia."

Brenda Deeter Hough first approached the school about doing something in her teammate's memory, Hedgesville athletic director Ron Allen said.

"It's tremendous to do something in her honor, in her memory," Allen said. "It's a big moment for the school."

That's because Branham was the biggest as female basketball players at Hedgesville go.

- Rick Kozlowski can be reached at (304) 263-3381, ext. 116 or

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