Published October 29, 2020
FORT MYERS, Fla.—Deacon Francis Head Jr., who served at St. Gabriel Church, Fayetteville, died Oct. 16 in Florida. He was 50 years old.
Deacon Head was born Feb. 12, 1970 in Griffin. He is survived by his wife, Stacey, and son Will.
Ordained to the permanent diaconate in 2013 in the Archdiocese of Atlanta, Deacon Head served on the Archdiocese of Atlanta Disabilities Ministry’s advisory board, volunteered at Toni’s Camp and worked in religious education before relocating to Florida.
Paralyzed after a motorcycle accident at age 20, he later came to view his disability and wheelchair as gifts.
In a 2013 interview with The Georgia Bulletin, he talked about how his experience would help in ministry as a deacon.
“When I started formation, I did not want to be the ‘wheelchair deacon,’ but I have learned through much prayer that I am uniquely gifted by God to minister to many people who feel they have no one who understands them,” he said. “There is dignity through Christ whether you roll through life or walk through it.”
Deacon Head had a bachelor of applied science degree in technology management from Clayton State University in Morrow. He worked as a technology coordinator and technology teacher to pre-K through eighth grade students at St. John the Evangelist School, Hapeville. The deacon had previously worked for the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games and Georgia-Pacific Corp.
The funeral Mass will take place at St. John XXIII Catholic Church in Fort Myers, Florida, on Saturday, Oct. 31, at 1:30 p.m., with visitation starting at 1 p.m.
Plans are also being made for a memorial Mass in the Archdiocese of Atlanta at a later date.