Upon life’s journey, we are given opportunities to plant seeds of goodness, seeds of kindness, and seeds of blessings that bestow our hearts, our work and our being. For those that sow the fields with loving generosity, so shall they reap the abundant harvest of eternal life.”
On Wednesday, December 18, 1935, our joy, Mildred Williams Motley, was born to the parentage of the late Julia Williams Johnson and Aguster Lee. She grew up in the countryside of Northampton County and was a product of its public school system.
Having God as an integral part of her upbringing, Mildred was baptized during her early life, gave her life to Christ and became a life-long member of the Antioch Missionary Baptist Church in Jackson, North Carolina. It was there that her love for God was deepened and spiritual gifts nurtured. Mildred was a devoted member, who loved singing in the church choir and serving her community with joy. As life progressed, she met and united in Holy Matrimony to the love of her life, Otha Lucious Motley, Sr. in March 1955.
Although her education was limited, Mildred developed a strong work ethic and was a proud entrepreneur. Seeing the need to help provide for her family, she worked with Pruden Farms, alongside her husband, for several years. After which, she provided Housekeeping and Cooking services throughout the Roanoke Valley. Mildred was known for her famous chicken and pastry, collard greens and cornbread. Cooking and caring for her family and the children of the community, was her life’s work.
“Who can find a virtuous woman? She is worth far more than rubies.” (Proverbs 31:10) Mildred’s qualities of hard work, fear of God, respect she had for her husband, foresight, encouragement, care for others, concern for the poor and love for her family, all led her to a life of enjoyment, honor and worth. Yes, Mildred was the epitome of “A Virtuous Woman”. She was the matriarch of the Williams-Motley family and respected as such. The values and principles she instilled will leave a permanent impression in the hearts of all she touched.
On Sunday, August 9, 2020, while in the serenity of her home, Mildred gained her wings - she received two wings to veil her face, two wings to veil her feet and two wings to fly away so that the world can do her no harm. As she transitioned from our care and into God’s Keeping, she now resides safe in the arms of Jesus and we can hear her spirit utter these words: “Don’t cry for me, I’m not gone. My soul is at rest, my heart lives on. Light a candle for me to see and hold on my memory, but save your tears for I’m still here by your side through the years.” Our matriarch, Mildred and patriarch, Lucious, of this branch of the Motley family, are heavenly reunited, along with their son, Larry Motley. She also met her stepfather, Clinton Johnson on God’s celestial shore.
We who are bound by many lifelong lessons, sweet memories, and significant values are: her five children, Malinda Motley (Charles) of the home, Gloria Branch (Nathaniel) of Gaston, NC, Rose Motley Sumner (Stephen) of Weldon, NC, Otha Motley, Jr. (Connie) of Roanoke Rapids, NC and Anthony Cotton (Lorri Cotton) of Garysburg, NC; two god-daughters, Eunice Peterson (Roger) of Jackson, NC and Tammy Gatling of Greenville, NC; one god-son, Kenneth Smith of Murfreesboro, NC; nine grandchildren, two of which she reared as her own, Latoshia Motley of Weldon, NC, and Delmeshia Jones of Roanoke Rapids, NC and two who grew up in her loving care, Chelsie Chavis of Murfreesboro, NC and Rosie Sledge of Weldon, NC, NaShan Nichols of Fayetteville, NC, Anthony Cotton, Jr. of Buford, GA, Teon and Destiny Cotton of Garysburg, NC, Shalena Powell of Severn, NC and Dustin Rook of Wilmington, NC; five god-grandchildren, Travis Peterson of Maryland, Tia Edwards (Terry) of Winston Salem, NC, Naja and Elijah Gatling of Greenville, NC and Charmaine Harris of Roanoke Rapids, NC; three great-grandchildren, Jeremy Motley of Weldon, NC, Ranaja Lane and Jeremiah Ghoston both of Severn, NC; two great-great-grandchildren, Zayden Cheek Motley of Weldon, NC and Tanaisha Graham of Emporia, VA; her siblings, to whom she was very dedicated, Rosa Johnson and Ellen Bethea both of Severn, NC, Christine Fields (David) of Summerville, SC, Dorothy Johnson and Mary Johnson both of Patterson, NJ, Joyce Mallory of Roanoke Rapids, NC, Hazel Lee of Halifax, NC and Isaac Lee of Weldon, NC; . sisters-at-heart, Betty Motley of Pleasant Hill, NC and Inez Epps of Garysburg, NC; three loving sisters-in-law, Barbara Motley Smith and Eunice Branch (Milton) both of Roanoke Rapids, NC and Selena Motley of Jackson, NC; one brother-in-law, Carol Motley of Roanoke Rapids, NC; a special nephew, Elliott ‘Red’ Johnson of Rocky Mount, NC, her precious niece, Diane Motley of Gaston, NC; loving nieces, nephews, relatives and friends. Although she left us behind, we will never forget the life lessons she taught us. Mildred lived a life of service and humility that we will cherish for the rest of our lives.
Private services will be held. Please keep the family in your thoughts and prayers.
Relatives and Friends are encouraged to visit Mrs. Motley's tribute wall to share memories,
extend condolences and to order floral tributes, as sentiments to the family.
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"Professional Care, With Dignity & Integrity"
to the family of Mrs. Mildred Williams Motley.
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