On Thursday, December 30, 2021, our Heavenly Father called home to glory his daughter, Kelly Ethel (Brayboy) Johnson, after a righteously won battle.
Kelly Ethel, better known as Ethel, was born in Aiken, South Carolina on January 12, 1941, to the late John (Jessie) and Dessie Brayboy. She was the eleventh of fifteen children born of this union. Ethel received her formal education in the Aiken County Public School System. She accepted the Lord at an early age and was baptized at Thankful Grove Baptist Church.
Upon completion of her formal education, Ethel moved to New York City, New York to seek other opportunities. She lived in New York until moving to Philadelphia, PA in 1962 to offer support to her sister Pearl who was preparing to give birth to a daughter, Patricia. In addition, Ethel helped to care for her baby brother Leroy, her ailing parents, and a host of nieces and nephews when needed. Ethel loved her family and would come running whenever she could offer her assistance.
Ethel met and married her husband, the late Ernest Johnson on September 4, 1976. Their union was blessed with two children, Carlton and Christina. Ethel was a doting mother and her children were her life. She believed strongly in the value of education. Of all of her accomplishments, she was most proud of seeing her children graduate from college.
Ethel worked in a number of factory and assembly line positions. She worked for Laser Magnetics for 17 years as a technician building and soldering printed circuit boards until the company closed in the late 1980s. After retiring, Ethel babysat her beloved twin grandnephews, Mac and Zac, until they were of school age. She doted on them and they adored her in return. Following this, Ethel did domestic work which included caring for her employer's children, again the children adored her. Ethel was an excellent cook; she could make anything, and I mean anything! Not only was she a master in the kitchen, but Ethel also had a green thumb. At one point, she and her brother Henry shared a vegetable garden where they would grow everything from peppers to collard greens.
Ethel wasn't all work, she also loved to have a good time. She and some of her sisters started a social club, Club Paradise. They would have fancy balls and take trips. Ethel was beautiful both inside and out. She would often comment that she was a "looker". She was a loving and giving woman who would help any and everyone that was in need of help. Ethel would give you the shirt off her back but she didn't take no mess! You always knew where she was coming from. Ethel was a strong woman and a fighter until the end. All that were blessed enough to cross paths with her knew that she was someone that they could depend on. Her physical presence will be greatly missed but she will forever be with us in spirit.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Jessie and Dessie, her husband Ernest, and eleven of her siblings. Ethel leaves to cherish her beautiful memories, her children: Carlton Johnson and Christina Johnson (Marcus Cannon) of Philadelphia. Her one and only grandson Marcus Cannon, Jr. and bonus granddaughter Shaiann Mathis. Two sisters, Hattie Smith of Philadelphia, PA and Cora (Ben) Trowell of Aiken, SC. One brother, Leroy (Diane) Brayboy of Philadelphia, PA, best friend Beatrice Haggans, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.