Doretha Claressa Williams, 90, of Largo, MD passed away peacefully on April 24, 2023 at 3:30am.
Doretha was born on January 29, 1933 in a small city called Chickasha, Oklahoma to the late Eula Beatrice Hawkins and Fredrick D. Mitchell. The youngest of three, she learned how to hold her own with two older brothers. She fondly recalled crossing the railroad tracks to get to school, excelling in her classes and giving her brothers a hard time. Doretha graduated from Dunbar High School in Washington, DC, and went on to earn a degree in early childhood education from Langston University. While taking courses for her master’s degree at Oklahoma State University, she received a spiritual calling to become a foreign missionary. With her 11-year-old daughter by her side, Doretha traveled to Liberia, West Africa to spread the word of God while educating the young kids of Liberia on how to read and write. During her time in Liberia, Doretha’s daughter Colette kept asking for a younger brother. As fate would have it, a three-year-old boy was in need of a loving home. Welcoming this young child with open arms, Doretha immediately noticed he was in dire need of medical intervention and took him to get the necessary care available. Had she not done so, he would have died shortly thereafter. Upon her return to the U.S., Doretha began her writing career. She is a published author of both children’s books as well as poetry. Her poems can be found in The American Journey of Anthropology books.
In addition to her parents, Doretha is preceded in death by her oldest brother Fred Mitchell (wife Levester Mitchell), and older brother John H. Mitchell, Sr. Both brothers were proud veterans who served their country in the United States military.
Doretha is survived by her son Sam A. Williams, daughter Colette Jenkins, daughter-in-law Karen Williams, niece Denise C. Mitchell, nephew John H. Mitchell Jr. (wife Olivia Mitchell), grandchildren Jacob L. Williams, Kenneth E. Jenkins (wife Daniell Jenkins), Charmen F. Holbrook, Rebekah Holbrook, Alexander Williams, Tiarra Williams, and Kyle C. King, great grandchildren, Laila Williams, Jacob Williams Jr., Hannah Joy Williams, Jaden Jenkins, Leah Randolph, and Ayden Dawson, and a host of other relatives and friends.
A memorial service will be held in honor and celebration of Doretha’s life, 11am, May 1, 2023 at Lee Funeral Home: 6633 Old Alexandria Ferry Road, Clinton, Md. 20735.