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  • "May our Creator continue to bless and keep your family safe..."
    - James A. Johnson & Family
  • "My deepest sympathy for your loss. May the God of comfort..."
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Mrs. Jean Marie Rhett (nee Edwards), formerly of 2222 Anderson Street, Petersburg, Virginia, transitioned from this life to her Heavenly home on Tuesday, July 31, 2018, in Accokeek, Maryland, surrounded by her loving family. Born July 13, 1936, she was the eldest child of parents, Major F. Edwards, Sr. and Bessie B. Edwards, who, together with siblings, James T. Edwards and Mattie V. Morris, preceded her in death.

A 1955, honors graduate of Peabody High School, she loved the Lord and was locally known for her musical gift of song and love of opera music. While singing at Mt. Olivet Baptist Church in 1958, she met Malachi Rhett, a United States Serviceman, from Coosawhatchie, South Carolina. They wed on January 15, 1960, and together as a unified team of proud parents, nurtured and developed the minds of four children: Malachi E. Rhett, Jr., formerly of Petersburg, now of Accokeek, Maryland, and one of her devoted caregivers; Ladiner L. Blaylock (Prentiss) of Raleigh, N.C., Gary D. Rhett (Constance) of Baltimore, Maryland, and Michelle D. Rhett, also her caregiver, of Accokeek, Maryland.

For more than sixty years, she impacted lives around the world. Considered a sophisticated woman of grace, class and beauty, she loved fashion, cooking, reading, walking, and learning every subject imaginable. A lifelong straight A student, she excelled in educational programs on any subject and completed college and technical courses throughout her career in the fashion, retail and textile industry. In 2004, she retired to resume her world travels which began as a military wife and included living abroad in Western Germany and Seoul, Korea and residing in Alabama, Georgia, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Texas.

A devoted Christian who exemplified a life of faith and community service, she was a member of Mt. Olivet Baptist Church of Petersburg for fifty-five years before joining Good Shepherd Baptist Church under the dynamic leadership of Bishop Jeffrey Reeves, Sr.

She leaves to cherish and continue her legacy siblings: Major F. Edwards of Motoaca, Robert N. Edwards of Lidonia, Georgia, and Dorothy Edwards Williams of Lawton, Oklahoma. Survived by a host of family and friends, she will miss her four grandchildren: Christine, Tianna, and Malcolm Rhett, as well as Marqueat Delante Lewis, her devoted caregiver, chef, and hanging buddy; Arthur Morris III, her devoted brother-in-law, Finis D. Creer; niece and faithful caregiver; and very special lifelong girlfriends, Genevieve Dubois, Mary Fogg and Mable Talley, all originally from Petersburg.

Services will be held 11:00 A.M., Saturday, August 11, 2018, at Good Shepherd Baptist Church, 2223 S. Crater Road, Petersburg, VA, Bishop Jeffrey L. Reaves, Sr., officiating. The interment will be held at a later date at Virginia Veterans Cemetery, Amelia, VA.

Floral arrangements may be sent to the funeral establishment and cards and gifts may also be sent to her husband at 2222 Anderson Street, Petersburg, VA.

Funeral arrangements entrusted to the staff of J.M. Wilkerson Funeral Establishment, Inc., 102 South Avenue, Petersburg, Va., (804) 732-8911,
Funeral Home
J.M.Wilkerson Funeral Establishment, Inc.
Petersburg, VA 23803-4220
(804) 732-8911
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Published in The Progress-Index from Aug. 8 to Aug. 9, 2018
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