John V. Anderson was the type of person that was very softspoken. He was involved in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), because he believed in justice and human rights. He often said, “Is it me, or is it a conspiracy?”
Anderson enjoyed reading books on Black history and literature. He loved all sports but he was really passionate about baseball. In his spare time, he also enjoyed watching the “Jeopardy” game show. His family was his pride and joy. He would do anything for his children and grandchildren.
Anderson died December 22. He was 69.
Anderson was born September 12, 1942 in Lynchburg, South Carolina, to Freddie Douglas Anderson and Addie Mae Brailey. He came to join his sister, Geneva, in Philadelphia as a teenager and completed his schooling in the Philadelphia Public School District. As a young man, he worked for many years as a truck driver for Eastern Music Systems. He was last employed with United Parcel Service.
Anderson married Andrea L. Dunston in 1963.
Anderson leaves to mourn: daughters, Andrea Jamilah Kennedy, Cheryl Asmahan Luke, Zenzi Anderson Lilley, Angela V. Anderson and Joy Williams; three sons-in-law, Munir Kennedy, Kenny Luke and Eric Lilley; sister, Geneva Lawson; 15 grandchildren, 4 great grandchildren; two aunts, Herlene Tilghman and Fannie Bailey-Theodore; mother-in-law, Clarissa Dunston; sister-in-law, Jacqueline Anderson; and two brothers-in-law, Charles D. Dunston and William B. Dunston. He also leaves a host of nieces, nephews and friends.
He was preceded in death by brother-in-law, William.
Services were held December 30. Slater Funeral Home handled the arrangements.
Mary Louise White cared for the elderly as she volunteered at senior centers. She was also an ordained Baptist minister who was devoted to her churches and took leadership roles in many of their activities. White died on Oct 22. She was 63.
“She was very loving,” said her cousin, Sabrina Haskett. “She was always giving to others, especially the elderly.”
White was born in Philadelphia to Eva L. and James Haslam. She graduated from Bok Vocational High School and received Bible training at Manna Bible Institute. She also studied at the Melvin Floyd School of Urban Missions and Evangelism.
She was a member of Christlike Pleasant Green Baptist Church under the leadership of the Rev. Robert Small. She sang in the choir for many years. In February 1993, White joined Polite Temple Baptist Church. She was ordained there in March 1995, then returned to Christlike, and was active in the Good Shepherd’s Club.
Her marriage to Ronald White ended in divorce. Her second husband, Elder Rodney Allen, died in 1998.
White is survived by two brothers, Jacob and James Haslam, and a sister, Ophelia.
She was preceded in death by sister, Corliss.
Services were held October 29.
The Philadelphia Daily News contributed to this report.
Karen Janenia Rogers Smith was a devout woman of God. She accepted the Lord at a young age and had been a member of Mt. Sinai Baptist Church for over 57 years. She died on Jan. 20. She was 63.
Smith was a faithful member of the Angelic Chorus for over 45 years and her tambourine was always at her side. Through the years, she taught vacation Bible school and Bible study and was a member of the Praise and Worship team. She also loved to decorate and work in the garden.
Smith was born on March 3, 1948 in Fernwood to William Rogers and Sally Lites Rogers. She was the eldest of four children. She was educated in the Upper Darby School District. She obtained a dual degree from Pennsylvania Institute of Technology, majoring in medical and office technology. She was also a graduate of the Gospel Crusades Bible School.
She was married to Garrett H. Smith. They had six children. She was primarily a homemaker and loving mother to her son, Garrett Jr. who was born with special needs. Smith was very active with Garrett Jr., who faithfully participated in the Special Olympics.
Smith is survived by mother, Sally Lites Rogers; sister, Artensie Phillips; brother, Leroy Rogers; daughters Crystal Smith, Sally Brown and Tiffany Robbins; sons Garrett Smith Jr., James Smith and John Smith; sons-in-law Darrell Brown and Vincent Robbins; grandchildren Kierre, Karon, John Jr., Da’Shay, Cristine, Daniell and Melanie; great-grandchildren Elizabeth Rogers, Regina Rogers, Merlin Smith and Lony Smith; brother-in-law Bernard Smith; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Smith was preceded in death by her husband and her father.
Services were held Jan. 28 at Mt. Sinai Baptist Church. Francis Funeral Home handled the arrangements.
Catherine Louise Finney worked much of her life. She was described as very direct, but a kind and generous person. Finney had a “big heart,” especially when it came to family. Birthdays were particularly important to her. She died November 10. She was 76.
Finney was employed early on by the Philadelphia Credit Bureau. She later attended classes at the Opportunities Industrialization Center (OIC) to become a data entry operator. She graduated at the top of her class. Upon graduation from OIC, she obtained employment with the Pennsylvania Railroad, later Conrail, where she retired after 24 years of service.
Finney was born May 15, 1935. She was one of five children born to John Herman Scott and Rosa Chapman Scott. She was educated in the Philadelphia Public School District, where she attended Michael Arnold Elementary, Fitzsimmons and later Simon Gratz High. She left high school before graduation in order to obtain employment to help support the family. She later received her GED from Olney High School while working. She excelled, making her family very proud.
Finney was raised in the Church. She and her siblings attended Jones Tabernacle Baptist Church in North Philadelphia. She was later baptized with her husband and daughter at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church. Her faith and connection to the Church was important to her.
She grew up in North Philadelphia where she met and married her soulmate, Walter L. Finney. They had attended school together. They were married on August 3, 1961. Of this union, a daughter, Aleta, was born.
Finney liked to travel. She took trips to the Bahamas, Canada, Florida, Las Vegas and often to Atlantic City to visit the casinos. She enjoyed watching television, especially her favorite program, “The Price Is Right.”
She also had a particular fondness for animals, especially cats. Her cats were always lavished with love and affection. Her true love though was her family, especially her daughter.
Her family said she was a very neat and well-groomed individual, who was always quite conscious of her appearance. Her hair was her crowning glory. Even as her health declined, she remained cognizant of her sisters’ birthdays and insisted that cards be sent to them.
Finney leaves to mourn: husband, Walter; daughter, Aleta Finney; sisters, Dorothy Scott and Gloria O’Connor; eight nieces, four nephews, and a large host of great-great-nieces and nephews, other family members and friends.
Finney was preceded in death by siblings, John Scott, Robert Chapman and Clarence White.
Services will be held November 18 at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 6334 North Broad St. The viewing will be from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. The service will start at 10:30. Ray Funeral home handled the arrangements.
Walter Dennis Kelly Sr., affectionately known as “Freddy,” was always a no-nonsense loner and very private man who stood his ground for the things he believed in. He is best remembered for those things and will be greatly missed by his family and friends. The U.S. veteran died on October 14. He was 75.
Kelly was born on August 15, 1936 in Carthage, N.C. to George and Eliza Kelly.
When Walter Kelly, the fourth of five children, was still a toddler, the Kelly family moved to Washington, D.C. Kelly would later receive most of his education through the public school system.
It was also during those formative years that the three sons of George Kelly were all being called “Kelly” — as if it was their first name and the versed name followed them throughout their lives.
When Kelly completed high school in 1955, he immediately enlisted in the United States Army and served three years of active duty, and then re-enlisted for another four years in the U.S. Army Reserves. By the time Kelly had completed his military service, his family had relocated once again, this time to Philadelphia and he joined them there.
Kelly came to Philadelphia with no real career plans, and worked on and off in his family’s restaurant. He was far from being grounded and the only thing he was certain of, was that he would never marry or have children.
Kelly, the confirmed bachelor, was always stylishly dressed and wearing one of his beloved, signature hats. His appearance was only second to his promotion of physical fitness and nutrition. He lived a carefree life until 1964, when he met Novella Silver. They married soon after, and Kelly would eventually become the father of seven children.
It was also in 1964 that Kelly accepted a position at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in electrical maintenance. In 1970, Kelly went back to school and received another certification in electrical engineering maintenance. Kelly enjoyed working at the Art Museum very much and started studying art and making drawings of his own, even painting on canvas. Kelly worked at the Art Museum for 33 years and rarely took a sick day.
When he retired, Kelly became an avid reader and self-proclaimed historian. He also loved collecting commemorative stamps, old movies and documentaries about famous war heroes, world leaders and natural wonders.
Kelly leaves to mourn: children, Walter Jr., Angenette, Jacqueline, Ruth, James, Charlene and Charles; 13 grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews and cousins.
Kelly was preceded in death by his parents and four siblings, Marva, Lessie Mae, James and George.
Services were held October 24, at Slater Funeral Home.
Lawrence Dent was described by loved ones as an exceptional man who lived a remarkable life in Christian faith and service. He was a man of few words, but his wisdom was profound. He was the “go-to” person when one wanted honesty and truth. He died Dec. 20. He was 85.
Dent was born on Sept. 17, 1926 to Harry and Anna Dent. He was the middle child of a family of seven. He received Christ as his personal savior at the age of 13 under the pastorate of the late Rev. Charles Carter, his uncle. It was his faith that allowed him to excel at Bartram High School and in the United States Army in the Philippine Islands. He distinguished himself by retiring from two full-time jobs for over 30 years, with the U.S. Postal Service and as a store manager for the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board.
Upon leaving the military, his Christian life’s mission was that of service to God and his wives. He married Gloria Boston, who preceded him in death, on Feb. 15, 1946. He married Cecile Stanford on Dec. 27, 2007. His other dedications were to his family, friends and community.
His family said he always set an exceptionally high standard for himself as an example of how to respect, love and revere his wife. To his children, his soft-spoken voice of reason served as his particular brand of discipline, and every child knew of his love, hopes, support and dreams for them. His family was first and foremost.
Additionally, Dent was a Prince Hall Mason at Campbell Washington Joppa and Lodge 37. He also had an appointment from the Rev. Lester McNeil to serve on the Stewart Board as a treasurer, was the baritone member of the Gospel Chorus, a member of the finance committee, instrumental for getting a copier for the church and producing Men’s Day booklets and ads for many years, served on the committee for pastoral lay preachers. He has been vice president of the Nile Swim Club and personally tried to keep it a viable entity of the community.
He is survived by his wife, Cecile; three daughters, Jewell Searcy, Patricia Wallace and Gloria Terrell; a son, Lawrence Dent; son-in-law, Leon Wallace; daughter-in-law, Victoria Scott-Dent; nine grandchildren, Lawrence Searcy, Melanie Huckabee, Courtney McCord, Michael Wallace, Lashaya Davis, Monique Cassis, Anthony Cassis, Victoria Dent and Rashawn Dent; special friends, Creighty Bivens, Helen Cropper, Brenda and Bill Gray, Karen and James Pendleton, Ursula Johnson; and a host of friends from Bethel AME Church.
Services were held Dec. 29. Yarborough and Rocke Funeral Home handled the arrangements.
Sarah Elizabeth Lowman, affectionately known as Aunt Beth, was a mother to many even though she never had any biological children. She shared a close relationship with the nieces and nephews who relocated to Philadelphia for a better job and educational opportunities. She also appreciated that nieces, nephews and others went the extra mile to make sure her needs were met. She died Dec. 1. She was 85.
Lowman was born on Dec. 18, 1925 to Walter and Catherine Smith of Westmoreland County, Virginia.
Lowman received her education in the Westmoreland County public school district. In 1943, upon graduation from high school, she joined her older siblings in Philadelphia. She was employed by D’Alonzo & Company as a power machine operator for more than 40 years.
Lowman accepted Christ as her personal Savior at an early age and was baptized, and attended the Salem Baptist Church in Mt. Holly, Virginia. In later years, she joined the Thankful Baptist Church under the pastorate of the late Reverend Harrison J. Trapp.
She was committed to serving the Lord and became active in several ministries: Sunday school, deaconess, pastor’s aid, trustee aids, Mission, ushers, drama and the Feeding Program. She also worked tirelessly in the kitchen by purchasing, preparing and serving food for funerals and special events.
She enjoyed attending church and showed genuine kindness and concern for the well-being of everyone. Her lifestyle was a true reflection of the “fruits of the spirit.” Through her guidance and prayers, several family members joined the Thankful Baptist Church, and she was so very proud.
Lowman leaves to mourn: many nieces and nephews: five godchildren, Dianne, Linda, Rene’, Eric and Tony as well as a host of cousins and close friends.
Services will be held Dec. 9 at Thankful Baptist Church, 1608 West Allegheny Ave. The viewing will be at 10 a.m. The service will start at 11. Ray Funeral Home handled the arrangements.
Mary Eliza Carson Baskerville was a dedicated member of Vine Memorial Baptist Church for almost 60 years, having received the church’s Certificate of Recognition in 2007, in honor of 50-plus years of service at Vine Memorial Church.
She was also fiercely devoted to her family and loved ones.
“She cared most about family and home was very important to her,” Herman Baskerville said, her son.
“She was a woman who worked [to make] home the place everybody wanted to be.”
Baskerville died Nov. 24 at Lankenau Hospital in Wynnewood, Pa. She was 96.
Baskerville was born on April 23, 1915 to Lula and Ben Carson, born in Lincolnton, N.C., where she received her early education. She was third of eight children. She attended and completed certification in the School of Cosmetology in Atlantic City, N.J. Mary was a long-time employee in Philadelphia at Sears-Roebuck and John Wanamaker’s department stores.
In 1937, she wed Herman Royal Baskerville, a veteran of World War II. To this union were born two children.
Baskerville leaves to mourn: children, Sylvia Barbara and Herman Stephen; two sisters, Frankie and Carrie Lee; grandchildren, Peter Eugene Turner, Paul Eugene Turner (Mary Beth), Lennie Elizabeth Turner, Aaron Stephen Baskerville (Meghan), and Sheena Alexis Baskerville; three great-grandchildren, Claire Marie Turner, Sadie Ann Turner and Andrew Stephen Baskerville.
She was predeceased in death by siblings, George, Charlie, Ben Jr., Alene and Cletta.
Services will be held Dec. 2 at Vine Memorial BC, 5600 West Girard Avenue. The viewing will be at 9 a.m. The service will start at 10. Wood Funeral Home handled the arrangements.
Inez Chappell Dubose was employed in the garment industry where she retired after 29 years of dedicated service. She possessed a warm and caring spirit. She died Nov. 4. She was 84.
DuBose was born on March 29, 1927, in Brewton, Ala. She was the daughter of Callie Lovelace Chappell and George Chappell. She received her education at Southern Normal High School in Brewton and graduated on May 25, 1945. She accepted Christ and became a Christian during her teen years, and as an adult she joined Mt. Carmel Baptist Church where she was a longtime member until her death.
DuBose was an active member of the Sunshine Senior Center, and was usually among the first to arrive. She enjoyed playing dominos and volunteered to serve seniors during mealtime. She was an avid participant in exercise classes at the center. She took a special interest in morning fitness walks along Cobbs Creek Parkway with her friend and neighbor, Mary Jane. She enjoyed traveling, shopping at the mall and dining at the Cheese Cake Factory.
Although she did not have much when she came from Brewton to Philadelphia, she opened up her home to many relatives and friends who migrated from the South and needed a place to stay. She took great pride in preparing Sunday dinners and wasn’t satisfied until everyone was well fed.
Visits from her grandchildren and great-grandchildren on weekends and holidays warmed her heart and brought a smile to her face.
DuBose leaves to mourn: two children, James Ray Dubose (Patricia) and Gladys Jean Bryant; two grandchildren, Toi F. Bryant and Andre W. Dubose; two great-grandchildren, Nataiya Bryant and Leticia Goode; three sisters-in-law, Patricia Chappelle, Gloria Chappell and Sadie Lewis; and a host of nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.
DuBose was preceded in death by four brothers, Jerry M. Chappell III, George Chappell, Joseph Chappell, Samuel Chappell, and one sister, Emmaline Chappell Stallworth. Her grandson, Isaiah Bryant III, also preceded her in death in addition to her parents.
Services will be held Nov. 14 at Mt. Carmel Baptist Church, 5732 Race St. The viewing will be at 9 a.m. The service will start at 11.
Wood Funeral Home handled the arrangements.
Mary Frances Dicks was a devoted wife and mother known affectionately as “Byrd” and “Mom Dicks” by all of the neighborhood children. She had a special place in her heart for children and would eagerly work to help nurture their spirit and talent. She made sure her home was always open for children in need by offering them a warm, safe place of refuge.
Family and friends knew her as a warm, gentle and cheerful person. Dicks died on December 27. She was 83.
Dicks was born on October 18, 1928, in St. Augustine, Florida, and was adopted by Florrie Mays and James May who later relocated to Williston, South Carolina. She received her early education in the Williston Public School System and graduated from Scofield High School.
Dicks was baptized in 1936, at Frost Branch Baptist, Elko Creek, S.C. where she served faithfully until she married James Monroe Dicks on August 6, 1946, in Williston. They were married for 66 years. After moving to Philadelphia, they had three children: Marilyn J. Dicks-Riley, Carolyn Marie Dicks-Kee and Melinda Dicks.
Dicks was employed at Cuneo Eastern Press for over 15 years. After Cuneo permanently closed its doors, she decided to pursue her undergraduate degree in early childhood education and child psychology at Temple University in 1976.
Unfortunately, illness immediately overtook her in 1976 and prevented her from working full-time as an educator. She did, however, enjoy many years of part-time employment, initially with the Philadelphia Board of Education as a teaching assistant, and then with the U.S. Mint.
Dicks and her family joined the Tenth Memorial Baptist Church in Philadelphia where she was a devoted member until 1966.
In 1966, she joined the Greater Ebenezer Baptist Church and served faithfully until 2006 when her failing health forced her to become homebound. During her active years of service at Greater Ebenezer, she was a member of several auxiliaries, including the Floral Club, the Missionary Board and the Deaconess Board.
In spite of her long illness, she remained a faithful servant of God. She often remarked “when I look around, my good days outweighed my bad days.”
Dicks leaves to mourn: husband, James; three daughters, Marilyn, Carolyn and Melinda; stepson, Nathaniel Dicks; daughter-in-law, Annie Dicks; two sons-in-law, Herbert Roy Riley and Robert Leon Kee Sr.; adopted brother, Bonnie Perry; eight grandchildren, Tanya Marissa Ward, Marcus Douglass Russell, Marcus Nathaniel Dicks, Demetrius Dicks, Stacey Hunter, Melissa Neurell, Dawn Johnson and Robert L. Kee Jr.; five brothers-in-law, Horace Dicks, Laurie Preston Dicks, Roger Dicks, Gerald Leggins and Ernest Augustus Sr; five sisters-in-law, Vermelle Thomas, Margie Ruth Leggins, Dorothy Dicks, Audrey Dicks and Sadie Dicks; cousins, Gretchen Martinez, Warren Holmes Jr. and Mamie Newton; as well as a host of great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
Services will be held January 7 at Greater Ebenezer Baptist Church, 3200 North Broad St. The viewing will be at 9 a.m. The service will start at 10. Choice Funeral Home handled the arrangements.