Mother Oleavure Johnson was born on Tuesday May 29,1923 on Huttig, Arkansas to the late Pastor Samuel and Mother Mary McDaniel. The family moved to Shreveport, LA where her father worked as a sawmill worker and farmer. In 1920, he built with his bare hands the church now known as Mount Zion COGIC in Mer Rouge, L.A. In the 1930’s he moved the family to Fowler, LA to pastor a church there. Oleavure loved to share stories about that time in her life.
In 1941, Oleavure was part of the black migration. Some followers of Bishop C.A. Ashworth of the COGIC migration settled in to Akron, Ohio. On her journey up north from the rural south she met her future husband also a passenger of Bishop Ashworth’s by the name of Douglas Johnson Sr. Eventually the two wed and bore five children, Douglas Jr., Ruthie Mae, Clenstine, Ervis and Loretta. Douglas and Oleavure purchased their first home at 746 Noble Avenue where they helped to raise three generations. The two remained married until Douglas’ death in 2010.
Oleavure was a founding member of the Wooster Avenue Temple Church of God in Christ (later named St. Ashworth Temple C.O.G.I.C) under the leadership of its Founder Bishop C.A. Ashworth serving faithfully under the leadership of Superintendent LC Walker, Elder Richard Bradford and the current Pastor Robert E. DeJournett until her transition. Oleavure served on the mothers board, and assisted in the kitchen by cooking for church events and bereaved families. Oleavure was proud of her history. She kept personal archives of church programs, news clippings, and obits dating back to the 1960’s.
Oleavure worked as a house maid for her beloved employer Dr. Richard &Mrs. Betty Haas, who adored her. The Haas family offered a tribute to her in their autobiographical book. The Johnson and Haas families formed a bond that remains until this day.
Oleavure was a homemaker at heart and enjoyed teaching her offspring and those around her to keep things in what she referred to as “Table Order”! She could always be found in her favorite place in the house…the kitchen! Her dining table was the go-to place for Sunday churchgoers and holiday meal seekers. She loved to adorn her tables with fresh linens and place settings. We all raved about homemade meals, desserts and that (good delicious) Kool-Aid. She was not only gifted in the kitchen but in the garden where she grew much of her own produce. Oleavure could sew most anything with a simple needle and thread and could get the dingy souls of her grandchildren's socks sparkling white.
Oleavure was an immaculate housekeeper. She was innovative and a woman before her time. Dry cleaning her own clothing and that of others, recycling everything from soap to aluminum foil. Oleavure was a prayer warrior in her own right… the quiet storm you never saw coming. She was spiritually gifted and had a keen sense of discernment often seeing things prophetically which she kept to herself until fulfillment. Oleavure loved her family and no one was a stranger. She lived the scripture and reached out to help anyone she could. She’d often purchase hats, gloves, and coats for neighborhood children in need.
She enjoyed watching her favorite daily line up: The Price is Right, The Young and the Restless, Bold and Beautiful, Wheel of Fortune and Cavs games keeping up with the latest on Lebron James. Oleavure had a comedic sense of humor and gave everyone a nick name befitting their personality.
Oleavure played the acoustic guitar. She and her husband have been known to have private devotion, singing “When we all get to Heaven”. Oleavure and her husband had a flare for fashion a trait handed down to their children and grandchildren.
Oleavure was preceded in death by Husband of 68 years Douglas Johnson Sr, Sons Douglas Johnson Jr., Ervis Johnson, grandson Thomas K.C. Rankin and great grandson Dashawn E. Johnson.
Mother Johnson leaves to cherish her memory Daughters Ruthie M Rankin and Clenstine (Gary) Oden of (Akron, OH). Daughter in law Celina Johnson (Canton, OH). Grandchildren: Karlise Star Brown, Katrise Vinson, Rochelle Hamdar, Shirley Slay (Brandy) Brown, (Toledo, OH). Matelyn A. (Greensboro, NC) and Franshawn Johnson (Winston Salem, NC), Jason Davis (Fairmont, WV), Tony Virden (Akron, OH) . Great grandchildren: Charelle Munnerlyn (Pittsburgh, PA) Montrel Munnerlyn (Akron, OH), Aneesah Clayton (Jeffersonville, NC), India Watson (Akron, OH), Shayla (Terrell) Riley (Houston, TX), Asia (Darryl) Boyd (Stow, OH), Finland (Tanesha) Bolden (Cleveland, OH) Christopher Johnson, Danay and Montel Twyman all of (Winston Salem, NC) Ariel Reese, Neveah & Navon Brown (Toledo, OH) Tyauna Barnett and Demetrie Alexander, (Akron, OH) Edith Evans (Fairmont, WV). Great-great grandchildren NaArah and Noah Watson, Phoebe, Miles, and Thomas Boyd, Donnell and Eden Brooks, Sweden Bolden. Special grand daughter Tiffany Lane (Westchester, New York). The Saint Ashworth Temple Church Family and a host of nieces nephews relatives, friends and well wishers.
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