The Progress-Index Weekend - - OBITUARIES -

Ce­cil Knedell Saun­ders Sum­merville en­tered into eter­nal rest with the Lord on Satur­day, Oc­to­ber 6, 2018, af­ter more than 77 years of earthly ser­vice. Named af­ter her fa­ther and known by those clos­est to her as “Bayer,” Ce­cil was pre­ceded in death by her hus­band, Ed­ward Scott Sum­merville; her mother; Mary B. (May­bell) Saun­ders; her fa­ther, Ce­cil; and two broth­ers, Melvin and Benny. She leaves to cher­ish her mem­ory, two sons, Charles Thomas Ste­wart, Jr., and Ed­ward Scott Sum­merville, Jr.; and daugh­ter, Ti­a­juana Ste­wart. She also leaves de­voted grand­daugh­ters – care­giver Zhanell Sum­merville An­thony (Jimmy) who lov­ingly cared for her dur­ing her ill­ness and Ari­ana Ste­wart; grand­sons, Javaard Fisher, Austin Ste­wart, Ah­mad Ste­wart, and Alex Ste­wart; sev­eral great­grand­chil­dren; two sis­ters, San­dra S. Walker and Mar­cia S. Robin­son (James); two broth­ers, Dave A. Saun­ders (Theresa) and Mark R. Saun­ders (Belinda), and a host of other rel­a­tives and friends.

Born in Oc­to­ber 1940, the sec­ond of seven chil­dren born to the late Ce­cil William and Mary Bell Saun­ders, Ce­cil was a res­i­dent of Peters­burg but ul­ti­mately be­came a res­i­dent of Farm­ing­ton Hills, Michi­gan, where she resided un­til her death. She was ed­u­cated in the Peters­burg Pub­lic Schools and grad­u­ated from Pe­abody High School in 1958. In 1974, Ce­cil be­came the first African-Amer­i­can fe­male on the City of Peters­burg (VA) Po­lice Force. Her ac­com­plish­ment was high­lighted in the Sun­day, July 7, 1974, edi­tion of The Rich­mond Times-Dis­patch news­pa­per. She ma­tric­u­lated at Mary­grove Col­lege in De­troit, Michi­gan, from which she grad­u­ated in 1991 with a de­gree in English. Af­ter re­turn­ing to Peters­burg, she taught English at Pe­abody Mid­dle School un­til 1993. She de­cided to con­tinue her ed­u­ca­tion at Nor­folk State Uni­ver­sity earn­ing a Master’s de­gree in So­cial Work. Re­turn­ing to Michi­gan, she taught high school English in the De­troit Pub­lic School Sys­tem for al­most 29 years be­fore re­tir­ing in 2015.

Dur­ing her child­hood, Ce­cil was an ac­tive mem­ber of Zion Bap­tist Church where she ac­cepted Je­sus Christ as her Lord and Sav­ior and was bap­tized at an early age by the Rev­erend R.G. Wil­liams. In Michi­gan, she was an ac­tive mem­ber in the Word of Faith In­ter­na­tional Chris­tian Cen­ter un­til her health de­clined.

Fu­neral ser­vices will be pri­vate.

Obit­u­ary cour­tesy of J.M. Wilk­er­son Fu­neral Es­tab­lish­ment, Inc., 102 South Av­enue, Peters­burg, VA, (804) 732-8911, jmwilk­er­son­since1874.com.

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