December 23, 1944 - May 4, 2022
"He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Yea though I walk through the valley of the Shadow of death, I will fear not evil; for thou are with me: thy rod and thy staff comfort me." Psalm 23:3-4 Edith Earlene Betha Johnson was born December 23, 1944, to the late Dorothy Cole Betha and Bennie Betha in Washington, D.C. She was the eldest of three girls born to this union, her sister, Clara Betha Priestley proceeded her in death and her youngest sister, Jacquelyn resides in Charlotte, NC with her husband, Jose. It was love that made the decision, it was love that allowed Jacquelyn to leave the comfort of her home and it was love and a grateful heart that kept her at the bedside of her sister. Edith and Jacquelyn reminisced about the past as she pledged her love to care and support to her brother-in-law, Willie Earl. Edith confessed Christ as her Personal Savior at an early age at Simon Hill Missionary Baptist Church under the leadership of her late grandfather, Pastor Washington Cole, Sr. Edith attended Daniel Hand Elementary School in Tougaloo, MS and later attended Holy Ghost Catholic School in Jackson, MS. She was a graduate of Tougaloo College with a degree in Education. In college, Edith joined the AKA sorority and became incredibly involved in various activities and outreach opportunities. The bond formed with her AKA sisters lasted a lifetime and forever in her heart. Her passion for teaching and her compassion for her students lead her to spend more than 40 years as a devoted and dedicated educator. Edith was highly regarded for her skills and her NO NON-SENSE policy when it came to her student's behavior- it was not tolerated period. She had the unique gift to set the bar high for her students, at the same time showed them how to achieve their goals. The quality of her life's work is evident not only in her awards and citations received, but also in the countless times she was lovingly remembered by her students, family, and friends. Edith was united in marriage to Oliver Charles Rice and the union was blessed with : children, Oliver Charles Rice, Jr., of New Castle, Delaware and Angela Marie Rice Burnett of Greensboro, N.C. On December 29, 1985, she was united in holy matrimony to the love of her life, Mr. Willie Earl Johnson- her true love, soulmate, and best friend, who delighted in making her happy, treasured and loved. Edith and Willie Earl enjoyed traveling together, she loved his sense of humor and he loved her for loving him, this was their love story. Love allowed them to open their home and adopt Willie Earl Johnson, Jr. (Kinesha) who resides in Virginia. Edith legacy of love will live forever in the hearts of her loving and devoted husband, Willie Earl Johnson, children, Charles, Jr, Angela, Willie Earl, Jr., LaDarrell Perry and Michael Dixon. Grandchildren, Oliver Ill, Donavon Rice, Sol, Laura, Joshua, Isaiah, and Samuel Burnett. Her adoring sister, Jacquelyn Jose), Aunts, Mary L Cole and Charlene Cole of Jackson, Annie Laura Cole of Ridgeland and a host of nieces, nephews, relatives and friend.
"He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Yea though I walk through the valley of the Shadow of death, I will fear not evil; for thou are with me: thy rod and thy staff comfort me." Psalm 23:3-4 Edith... View Obituary & Service Information
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