Cover photo for Amber Lois Barksdale's Obituary
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1952 Amber 2023

Amber Lois Barksdale

March 28, 1952 — August 12, 2023


Amber C. Barksdale affectionately known as “Lois” by her family was born March 28, 1952 in Manson North Carolina to the late Ernest Coker and Lizzie Belle Jackson (Step-father Dennis Jackson). Amber departed this life peacefully, at her home on August 12, 2023. She was proceeded in death by siblings, Ernest Coker, Jr, Clyde Coker, and step-brother Dennis Jackson, Jr. She joined Gospel Baptist Church at an early age, and later became a devoted member of St James Baptist Church. 

She was educated in the Richmond Public School System and graduated from John Marshall High School in 1968 at the age of 16. After Amber graduated early she waited two years until she turned 18 to begin working at the United States Post Office, and after only eight months working she purchase her 1st car.

Amber married the love of her life Garfield Barksdale Jr on May 13, 1978, whom she lovingly called “Garpie”.

She went on to attend J. Seargeant Reynolds and obtained her Associates Degree in Criminal Justice in 1987.

She also pursued her Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Amber began her career with the Department of Corrections as a Corrections Officer, December 1977 at the Virginia State Penitentiary. As a student she received Academic honors and was ranked number one in her basic Corrections Officer Training Class. Her supervisors noticed her leadership ability and she was chosen to attend Advanced Officer’s Training School. 

Amber was promoted to Corporal and then to Seargent while she was employed at the Virginia State Penitentiary. She served as Assistant Watch Commander at MCV West 9 West. As her career developed, she went on to become a General instructor and Firearms Instructor. Although there were many challenges working at the Penitentiary, she remained there until it closed in 1991.

In January 1991, she was reassigned to Pocahontas Correctional Unit #13. At Pocahantas, Sgt Barksdale served as Watch Commander and in 1994, she was promoted to Lieutenant.

In December 2003, Lt Barksdale was assigned to Powhatan Correctional Center and remained there until her retirement from the Department Corrections in 2004, at the age of 52, after 27 years of service. During her time with the Department of Corrections, she met so many wonderful people, many of whom became lifelong friends. They enjoyed playing softball, volleyball, and bowling together.

Amber had a love of writing poetry, doing crossword puzzles, and of course the DALLAS COWBOYS.  Her favorite pastime though was playing BINGO and was a renowned bingo caller in Richmond and the surrounding area. Amber also loved cooking and baking pies and cakes, and her macaroni and cheese and chocolate chip cakes were a must have at all the cookouts.

Amber leaves to cherish her memories husband, Garfield Barksdale, Jr.; daughters, Paula Chapman, Chandra Chapman, and Amber Barksdale; grandchildren, Ambrea Chapman, Christian Chapman, Michael Crawley, Jr., Gartasia Crawley, Zamora Robinson, Kelise Otey; one great-grandchild, Jael Noble. Two sisters, Jennie Rose Bullock, Yvette Rustin (Lorenzo); and two brothers, Charles Coker (Minnie), and John Coker (Delores), and a host of nieces, nephews, and other family. One devoted friend Margaret Brown. 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Amber Lois Barksdale, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Funeral Service

Saturday, August 19, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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