Johnnie R. BrookerNovember 14, 1943 ~ December 15, 2017 (age 74)
Mrs. Johnnie R. Brooker, the daughter of the late Jacob Rivers, Sr. and Edna Crosson Rivers was born on November 13, 1943 in Hampton, South Carolina. She departed this life on Friday, December 15, 2017 at Hampton Regional Medical Center in Hampton, South Carolina. At an early age, she joined Bethlehem Baptist Church in Hampton, SC and remained an active member until her death. She served faithfully as a member of the usher and deaconess ministries. She frequently attended Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church of Blackville, SC along with her husband and was a supporter of the South Carolina Baptist Congress of Christian Education on the state and local level.
She attended the public schools of Hampton County and graduated from North District Training School in Varnville, SC in 1961. She graduated from South Carolina Area Trade School (Denmark Technical College) in Denmark, SC in Cosmetology in 1963. She was certified by South Carolina Board of Cosmetics Art Examiners as a cosmetology instructor in 1971 and taught cosmetology at Estill Training School, Estill, SC. She maintained her teaching certification over the years by attending the University of South Carolina Division of Continuing Education annually, including the year 2017. Because of love for cosmetology, despite the fact that she had not taught for many years, she maintained her teaching certification over the years by attending the University of South Carolina Division of Continuing Education annually From 1974 to 2011 she was the co-owner and manager of Brooker’s Mini Mart, and Pic And Pay Convenience stores located in Fairfax and Hampton, SC, respectively. Her involvement with the stores allowed the opportunity to meet and impact the lives of many people. She was married to Lenon G. Brooker of Blackville, SC on December 27, 1969. The union was blessed with two children.
She was a member of the Rising Star Chapter #154 Order of EasternStars, a member of South Carolina State Cosmetology Association,and a member-at-large of the Southeastern Province Silhouettes of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. She especially enjoyed attending the provincial and national silhouette meetings. She was an active member of the community and served faithfully as a volunteer with the Blackville Community DevelopmentCorporation and the Bethlehem Baptist Sunday School Convention Congress of Christian Education. She was recognized by the Bethlehem Baptist Union in 2014 for her loyalty and for the outstanding service she provided the organization for many years. For the last thirty-six years of her life, she was a loving and compassionate caretaker for a number of her immediate family members, including her mother, mother-in-law, sister, and brother, while managing two businesses and caring for her husband and children at the same time. She pursued life relentlessly and courageously, and her daily prayer was:
“One day at a time, sweet Jesus,
That’s all I’m asking of you.
Give me the strength to do every day
what I have to do. Yesterday is gone…
and tomorrow may never be mine;
Lord, help me today,
show me the way, one day at a time.”
She was very versatile and had a great love for sports, the arts, and travel. She loved watching golf and basketball and made sure her husband purchased season tickets to SC State University home football games each year and as many away games as possible. She enjoyed visiting art museums, dance and musical concerts, theater, sightseeing and the wonderful “Date Nights” she and her husband would have each month. One of her hobbies was decorating, especially for Christmas. She loved and supported her husband and children to the fullest and gave her utmost to ensure that their children would be provided the spiritual, moral, educational, and social environments and experiences that would enable them to become what God intends for them to be.
She leaves to cherish memories of her: a devoted husband, Lenon G. Brooker; a son, Minister Leonardo (Minister Owillinda) Brooker, Aiken, SC; a daughter, Natalia (Michael) Price of Raleigh, NC; a sister, Sarah Francis Williams of Hampton, SC; an aunt, Juanita Glover; and an uncle, George Crosson (Edna),all of Varnville, SC; four grandchildren, Leonardo K. Brooker, II,Harrison C. Brooker, Mason N. Price, and Madison S. Price; four sisters-in-law, Thomasina Brown, Willie E. Whitely, and Mildred Whitehead, all of Philadelphia, PA, and Lizzie M. Brooker of Aiken, SC; one brother-in-law, Ollie L. Brooker of Miami, FL;and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.