Deaconess Helen M. Powell, transitioned from labor to reward, peacefully, on October 7, 2018 at home with her family. Deaconess Helen was the daughter of the late JC and Mary Bethea McMillan of Lumberton, NC. She affectionately loved and adored her siblings, John (deceased), Lois, and James.
Helen was united in marriage to the love of her life, Ronald M. Powell on August 30, 1969. She was lovingly called by her husband, of 49 years, as “Ma Powell”.
Helen enjoyed school days at JH Hayswood High School and loved her class of 1965. She received a Secretary Degree for Womack Selena Business School. She also attended North Carolina Central University and the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.
At an early age, she joined First Baptist Church under the leadership of Dr. EB Turner. She later joined Sandy Grove Baptist Church once she married.
She was employed by the Robeson County Health Department in the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Department in which she served for over 30 years with her coworkers whom she loved dearly. Helen was a part of many organizations to include the Matrons’ Guild, the Garden Club, Order of Eastern Star Friendship Chapter #558, and VFW Auxiliary #8. She was very active in church and served in various roles to include Deaconess, Pastor’s Aide President, Missionary, Young Adult Missionary Advisor, Sunday School and she loved to sing on the choir with the Women of Devotion formerly known as the JB Ballard Choir.
“Dadima “, as she was affectionately known by her grandchildren and others, was an interior decorator, gardener, baker and loved to entertain in her home. If you were lucky, you savored the taste of at least one of her specialties; Strawberry Pizza, Strawberry Jam, or her Carrot Cake! The Sandy Grove Summer Youth Academy knew her as the “Hat Lady”! She was a collector of hats and owned over 200 of them! Technology was another hobby she enjoyed. She joined a computer class at the Weed and Seed building to learn how to properly use the computer. And you would often times find her with a camera. She took pictures of everything and everyone!
Helen loved her family! She talked, very often, of how much they meant to her. She felt it her duty to keep her family together. In the 90s, she organized the Bethea Family Reunion, becoming its first president. This annual event has been going strong to this day.
She leaves to cherish her memories, a loving and devoted husband, Ronald Powell; three children; David (Jerri-o) of Florida, Veronica, and Drayson of Lumberton. Six grandchildren; Keyanna, Tyron, Jaimon, Jerria, Tyson and Danielle. And three grandchildren by love, Marko, Tyniyah and Semaj. Two siblings; Lois M. Baker and James (Edna) McMillan. Mother in law; Ms. Ellouise Powell. Brother in laws; Sam (Ivory) Powell, Russell (Cheryl) Powell. Sister in laws; Dianne Powell and Vickie (Orlando) Martin. Aunts; Pearline M. Sneed, Martha Lancaster, Nannie Blake, Emma McKellar, Viola Bethea and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other family and friends.