Funeral services held for long time chef of Clara White Mission

Keith Smith died Monday from complications of COVID-19.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Funeral services were held Saturday for the long time chef of the Clara White Mission, Keith Smith.

Smith died on Monday from complications of COVID-19 at the age of 51.

He had been an employee of Clara White Mission - which offers meals and temporary housing for the homeless - for the past 31 years.

Action News Jax told you earlier this month that several employees and residents tested positive for the virus, according to a statement sent out by the Clara White Mission president, Michelle Paul.

Services were held at 11 a.m. at the Scottish Rites Masonic Cathedral, with a brief visitation scheduled at 10 a.m.



ORIGINAL STORY | July 22

Action News Jax has learned more about an employee at the Clara White Mission who died from a COVID-19-related illness.

The employee who died was 51-year-old Chef Keith Smith, Action News Jax’s Ben Becker has confirmed.

The funeral for Smith, who was a renowned and beloved chef, will be held Saturday at the Scottish Rites Masonic Cathedral starting at 10 a.m.

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Action News Jax first told you Tuesday that several employees and residents tested positive for COVID-19 at the Clara White Mission, according to a statement sent out by the Clara White Mission president, Michelle Paul.

The statement said over the last few weeks multiple employees had tested positive for the virus, and while the release did not give an update on the status of the employees, it did say, “Out of respect for our employees and residents privacy, we cannot comment on individuals status, but we can confirm one employee has passed away.”

The Clara White Mission plans on reopening Monday, July 26.

Earlier this month, Jacksonville City Councilwoman and Clara White Mission President/CEO Ju’Coby Pittman was hospitalized with COVID-19.