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Celebration of life to be held for Ira Mae Bruce

| Staff Reporters
Ira Mae Wells Hewatt Bruce of Holley Navarre, Florida passed away, Tuesday, December 1, 2020 due to complications of Alzheimer’s. She was born June 29, 1940 in Pensacola, Florida to Ira and Mattie Wells. Ira Mae was a pioneer business, community, and political leader who contributed to the growth and development of Holley Navarre and Santa Rosa County. Ira Mae was the first woman to serve on the Santa Rosa Board of County Commissioners. With business partners Jerry Wilkie and Phil Babiak, she operated Century 21 Island View Realty for more than 40 years. She was a member of many civic, community, and business boards. She was proud to be the first woman to serve as the president of a board of directors for a local bank. She was preceded in death by her parents, son Mark Lee Hewatt, and brother Gus Brown. She is survived by her husband Gaius Bruce; children Matthew (Martha) Hewatt, Brenda Barre’, and Keith Bruce; grandchildren Mark (Jordan) Hewatt, Mattie Barre’, and Kayla Bruce; great-grandchildren, Casten, Kylie, and Gideon; sister-in-law Virginia Brown; Naomi Golden, cousin and life-long traveling companion and many other Wells family members. Special friends include Ron and Peggy Fletcher, Bill and Martha Pullum, and Phil Babiak, her business partner. A Celebration of Life will be held May 8, 2021 at The Club Pagoda at Juana’s Pagodas on Navarre Beach. Visitation will be from 10-11 a.m. The Celebration Service will begin at 11 a.m. Reception will follow the service. Please wear a mask while indoors. The family would like to express their deepest gratitude to Kate, her personal caregiver; to the staff of Navarre Gardens North; to Emerald Coast Hospice; and to Dr. William Howe, Suzanne, and Dawn for their loving care of Ira Mae. In lieu of flowers, charitable donations may be made to Pink Pirates of Navarre or the Ira Mae Bruce Scholarship at Northwest Florida State College Foundation.