I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord. Psalm 118:17 (KJV)
Our beloved Gloria Genoria Hayes Johnson passed into eternity early Sunday morning, July 22, 2018. Gloria—born June 3, 1942—was preceded in death at an early age by her mother Francis Hayes and later in life by her father Edgar Peterson and sister Annie Ruth McFadden. Upon the death of Francis, Gloria’s paternal aunt and uncle, Jessie and Jesse Richard Monroe, foster-parented Gloria as their own in rural farmland near Delway, NC—the neighborhood colloquially known as Hayestown. She joined Hayes Chapel Missionary Baptist Church at an early age and served diligently as an usher, an adult leader of the junior choir, transportation for both young and old and in any other capacity where she saw a need.
Gloria was educated in the Sampson County school system and graduated from Clear Run High School in 1960. The next year after graduation, she married her high school sweetheart Theodore “Ted” Johnson. To this union was born three children—Sharon Atterbury (nee Johnson) and Angerlia and Reginald Johnson. Due to life circumstances, in 1978, she welcomed her nephews Todd and Keith Woodward into her household and accepted the responsibility of raising them along with her three children.
Gloria’s life was intimately intertwined with that of her Aunt Jessie—her late mother’s sister. Along with Jessie raising Gloria after the passing of her mother, many years later upon the death of Jessie’s husband, Gloria and Jessie combined their individual households in 1982. On April 4, 1996, Gloria and Ted remarried; relocated to Gaithersburg, MD, from Delway, NC; and became members of the Inter-denominational Church of God (ICOG) by Christian Experience on March 19, 2000. At ICOG, Gloria dedicated herself to ushering and assisting whenever else she could. Jessie lived alone in NC for a short period of time before eventually relocating to Gaithersburg to live with Gloria and Theodore—until she passed at the age of 102 in April 2018—and joined ICOG also. In Jessie’s latter years, Gloria was her primary caregiver.
Gloria learned to cook and sew at an early age. Professionally she worked in clothing factories sewing shirts for such companies as Brooks Brothers, in furniture factories for such companies as Barcalounger, at JaPat Tailoring in DC and at JoAnn Fabrics in Gaithersburg, MD. Given all the sewing she did professionally, the majority of her sewing was a personal ministry of love for family members, friends and persons in need of an outfit but not with the financial wherewithal to obtain it. And her cooking has fed family and friends near and far including at home, Hayes Chapel and ICOG. Many a person has expressed fond memory of a dish and/or cake they had the pleasure of partaking of that Gloria prepared. Along with cooking and sewing, her hobbies included geography, “Sunday drives” looking at home and singing Gospel songs while cooking, sewing and taking care of others.
Gloria leaves to mourn her husband Theodore Johnson; siblings Brian Peterson of Bronx, NY, and Alycia Howard of Pikesville, MD; children Sharon Atterbury, Angerlia Johnson, Reginald (Sheila) Johnson, Rodney (Carmen) Williams, Jowain Williams and Theeon Johnson, all of MD; nephews Todd Woodward of Miami, FL, Keith Woodward of Raleigh, NC, and Marcus and Andrew (Tasha) Wallace) of Culpeper, VA; grandchildren Sharon’s daughter Alexandria Atterbury, Jowain’s son Jowain Jr. and Rodney’s children—Rodney Jr., Sanaa and Mekhiall of MD; great grandchildren Alexandria’s sons—Venice Chandler Jr. and Yariel Vazquez; great nephews and nieces Todd’s sons—Todd Jr., Tyler and Ashton; Keith’s daughter Katelyn; Marcus’ daughter Ashley; and Andrew’s sons—Mikael and Nathan. She also leaves to mourn family and friends near and far and her Hayes Chapel and ICOG families.
It is well (it is well)
With my soul (with my soul)
It is well, it is well with my soul