Archive for May, 2008

In Memory of Bernice “Bern” Morton

Bernice Morton, 82 of Selma, Alabama passed away on May 26, 2008. Funeral Services will be held on Thursday May 29, 2008 at 11:00 a.m. at Calvary Missionary Baptist Church with the Rev. Dr. Charles A. Lett officiating. Visitation will be held prior to the service from 10:00 a.m.-10:45 a.m. Interment will be at Pineview Memory Gardens under the direction of Lewis Brothers Funeral Home.

Mrs. Morton was preceded in death by her parents Mr. and Mrs. Earnest King, husband, Mr. Ennis Morton and son Ernest Sigmon Sr. Survivors include daughters: Dr. Janice Hunte (Eyston), Marcia Bailey (Marshall), Jenorice Haynes (Japp Sr.), son Ennis Morton Jr. (Carol), grandchildren: Rochelle Ramano (Thomas), Emerson Hunte, Dane Dougherty, Ernesto Sigmon, Erica Peck-Love (Shon), Sheila Smitherman (Juan), Marshanda Bailey, Erin Sigmon, Jasmine Hoffman (Justin), David Hunte (Valerie), Katherine Hunte, Japp Haynes IV, Eyslyn Hunte, great grandchildren: Jasmine Lacey, Solomon Sigmon, Seth Sigmon, Lily Moon Quintero, Brooklin Blu Peck Love, Thomas Ramano, Brock Tristan Smitherman, Brooke Nicole Smitherman, Brianna Simone Smitherman, sister-in-law: Queenie Ferguson, cousins Annie, Bessies, and Mildred Baker, special loved ones:

Hernice Mutuku, Rev. and Mrs. Reese , Fannie and Lester Bailey, Lois McGee, Wanda Tyler (God Daughter), Beloved Friend and Physician, Dr. Glenton Davis and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, special family and friends too numerous to mention.

Born on November 6, 1925 in Selma Alabama, she served the Lord in her community through her work at Selma University and her long time membership at Calvary Missionary Baptist Church.

Mrs. Morton was well known for her work during the civil rights movement and was often mentioned on CNN for her role in preparing meals for thousands of freedom fighters including Dr. Martin Luther King, Rev Ralph Abernathy, Joseph Lowery, Andrew Young, and Rev. Jesse Jackson in the 1960’s. Her life and story was recounted in the book entitled “The Selma Campaign 1963-1965.” She also received numerous awards for her leadership and dedication including the prestigious Drum Major for Justice Award and The Faithful Servant Award presented by the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in Atlanta in 1989.

She received an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Humanities from Selma University in May 1989 for her outstanding contributions in the field of Education. She loved people. In 1995, she was again honored for her contributions toward equality and fair treatment for everyone and received the Invisible Giant Recognition and Award during the 30th Anniversary March for Voting Rights. She has also been featured in the Selma Voting Rights Museum and has been the focus of several documentaries detailing the civil rights movement and the events leading up to Bloody Sunday. She is one of Selma’s famed “Foot Soldiers.”

She was loved by many and will be dearly missed. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Calvary Missionary Baptist Church, Selma.


In loving memory of Auntie Bern. I will always remember your kindness, warmth and gracious heart. When I first attended the family reunion, your smile beckoned to me from across the room. You are a woman of strength and pride. You made sure to tell me of the struggle of the Freedom Fighters, that the quiet streets I walk were once slippery with blood and tears. You instilled in me a sense of purpose; to not only remember my family’s history but to fight for our place in history itself. Not as slaves or dejected citizens but as people of faith, people of great diversity and most of all–as people worthy not only be remembered but honored. I wish I lived closer, so I could have known you better. But I can say, Auntie Bern, that you will remain in my thoughts and prayers, and your memory will be celebrated in the stories passed down to my children. God bless and keep you ❤

Your Niece, Lynn and Family

“At last you have departed and gone to the Unseen.
What marvelous route did you take from this world?

Beating your wings and feathers,
you broke free from this cage.
Rising up to the sky
you attained the world of the soul.
You were a prized falcon trapped by an Old Woman.
Then you heard the drummer’s call
and flew beyond space and time.”
Gone to the Unseen, Jelaluddin Rumi

May 31, 2008 at 2:44 am 1 comment

In Memory of CD “Dugga” Martin

C.D. Martin

C.D. Martin, 88, of Selma died May 10, 2008 at Vaughan Regional Medical Center.

Services are scheduled for 11AM, Thursday, May 2008 at Graveside Ceremony with the Rev. James E. Jackson officiating. Burial will follow in Fairlawn Cemetery under the direction of Miller Funeral Service. Survivors include brother, Fred Martin Sr.; nieces, Mabel Reddick; Jeanette (Johny) Moss of Selma, AL; Rosalyn (Clarence) Hatcher, Valdosta, Ga; and Alice Lee West of Selma, AL; nephews, Thomas Akons III, Clarence Mitchell, Malachi Martin Jr. of Chicago, Illinois, and Roy Mitchell, Detroit, MI. And great nephews.

Obituaries for Thursday, May 15, 2008, Selma Times Journal

Rest In Peace… On a sultry night in Selma, so hot the “skeeters” dropped from the sky and begged for a drop of water, my cousin Nile and I pondered over family stories. An incredible journey had begun, leading me from the muddy banks of Pig’s Eye to the backroads of Alabama to reconnect with family, and for the first time to look into eyes so like my own. Yet many questions remained unanswered. On a whim, Nile remembered our older cousin, “Dugga”. With excitment, Nile raced for the door. I panted in tow, dripping with sweat but eager for the adventure ahead. There was but a drip of gas in the tank as Nile sped down the narrow streets–in a town as small as Selma you can get pretty far on the last penny of gas. Many unseen events seemed to connect us, as small but important stitches in a family quilt we all shared–a quilt made of our memories, experiences and kindred connections. Nile and I arrived at Dugga’s house, he opened the door and with a smile said to Nile, “I was just thinking of you!”. Dugga invited us in, we sat knee to knee in his small living room while he patiently answered our questions, and told us stories of our family. I will always be thankful Dugga opened the door to us that night–a cousin he hadn’t seen in awhile, and a cousin he had just met. The stories he shared gave new energy to my work to create a family scrapbook, and in his passing, I hope we all realize how important it is to listen, to leave a legacy to the next generation and most of all–to find peace within our own families because after a person dies, it will be too late to look back and seek that lost connection.


“Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.”- Romans 12:15

May 28, 2008 at 5:08 am Leave a comment

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