I have fought a good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith. Henceforth, there is laid up for me a crow of righteousness which the Lord, the righteous judge shall give me at that day; Timothy 4:7-8
Bertha Lee Paul was born March 22, 1951 in Tutwiler Mississippi to the late Ida Mae Hill and Walter Wilson, Jr. Bertha attended Tutwiler Elementary School and graduated from Dublin High School in Coahoma County, MS. She later relocated to St. Louis, Missouri. She moved to Joliet, Illinois in 1977.
She accepted Christ under the leadership of Bishop Jordan at Bethlehem Apostolic Church, in Lockport, IL.
She was a graduate of Lewis University, where she majored in Law Enforcement. Her work history includes: Time Life Magazine in Chicago, IL, “Moses Doss Club”, Mitchell County Care, Motel 6, Tanglewood Trace Assisted Living all in South Bend, IN.
Bertha married Ronald Paul, the love of her life on June 25, 1995. They resided in South Bend, Indiana. He was a very supportive husband, accepted her children, and assisted in raising three of her grandchildren. He treated her like a “Queen”, meeting her every need until her death.
Bertha was very outgoing, loved to cook, fish and apply cosmetics, she was known as everyone’s Mom. Bertha’s house on Sunday was the place to be. You would find her cooking: greens, dressing, ham, sweet potato pies and barbeque. Her food was enjoyed by all! Bertha was a very loving and giving person, she would give you the shirt off her back. She always talked about the goodness of the Lord. Bertha had a special relationship with everyone of her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Bertha also had jokes.
Bertha made her transition on Sunday, January 5, 2020 at Memorial Hospital South Bend, IN after battling cancer for 11 years at 5:22 A.M. with family by her side.
Bertha leaves to mourn her precious memories: her beloved husband, Ronald Paul; children, Everlean (William) Dillard, Catherine Woods, Wilson Smith Jr., Rickey (Cynthia) Smith, Carolyn Sabrina Smith of Madison WI, Freddie Smith, Ervin Pam, LaTanya (Roy) Williams and Glenda Nelson all of South Bend, IN; Uneika (Philip) Young, Clyde Thompson-Mabry and Brittany Thompson; stepsons, Donald C. Paul and Aaron Paul of Everett, WA; special grandchildren, Ervin Pam, Jr., Savantra Smith, Kentavis Nelson-Sommers and Tequila Thomas; stepmother, Catherlean Eskridge; sisters, Willie Mae Howlett, Irma Jean Bond, Jimmie (Gary) Edmon, Jessie Thigpin, Arie Johnson and Kathy (Joseph) Baker; brothers, Joe Eskridge, Sr., Michael Wilson, Floyd Eskridge, Eddie (Veraina) Eskridge and Reverend Joseph Watson of Clarksdale, MS; uncle, Homer Walter of Compton, CA; in-laws, Barbara Jean (Tommy) Lee, Dwayne (Melinda) Powell; special niece and nephew who cared for her during her illness, Angie Lyons and Alex Robinson; she leaves a legacy of 51 grand-children, 39 great grandchildren; best friends, Jan and Bonnie; and a host of nieces, nephews, family and friends.
Private services were held in Joliet, Illinois. Local arrangements were entrusted to Alford's Mortuary.
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