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Mrs. Ruth Emma Bland Briggs, affectionately known as "Emma," entered into eternal life on Saturday, March 29, 2014, at the River View Health and Rehabilitation Center in Hopewell, Va.

The name Emma means "Healer." Deuteronomy 31:8, And the Lord, He is that doth go before thee; He will be with thee, He will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.

Emma was the daughter of the late James Everett Bland and Nora Rowlette Bland of Chesterfield, Va. Emma accepted Christ in her life at an early age and was baptized at Bethesda Baptist Church, Colonial Heights, Va. She was educated in the Chesterfield County and Hampton Virginia Public School systems.

Her various hobbies included: sewing, collecting stuffed animals, porcelain and fabric, as well as copper figurines. One of her favorite collections was pictures of the Last Supper. She enjoyed listening to gospel music and assembling puzzles. From a little girl on she always had dogs and cats as companions. Her latest cat was named "Kittie Boo." She enjoyed taking notes on Sunday morning while viewing ministers on television. Her favorite Bible verse was Psalm 23. Emma's home is full of gifts placed thoughtfully around the house.

Emma was preceded in death by her husband, Aaron J. Briggs III; two sisters, Fannie Bland Reese and Helen Bland Womack; brothers, Edwin Bland, John Bland and James Allen, and one devoted niece, Brenda Brown.

She leaves to cherish her memory, six sons, Charles R. Briggs of South Chesterfield, Va., Carl S. Briggs (Magola) of Grecia, Costa Rica, Bernard E. Briggs (Barbara) of Chester, Va., Nathaniel O. Briggs of South Chesterfield, Va., Roger A. Briggs (Marsha) of Dinwiddie, Va., and David L. Briggs of Chester, Va.; numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren; one sister, Sarah Bland Brown of South Chesterfield, Va.; two devoted cousins, Dorothy West and Julia McGill; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.

Services for Mrs. Ruth Emma Bland Briggs will be held noon Saturday, April 5, 2014, at Bethesda Baptist Church, 15800 Woods Edge Road, Colonial Heights, Va.; the Rev. Juanita A. W. Harrison, pastor, eulogist. Interment to follow at Mt. Minnis Cemetery.

Family members and friends are invited to pay final tribute to Mrs. Briggs at

Funeral arrangements entrusted to the staff of J.M. Wilkerson Funeral Establishment Inc., 102 South Ave., Petersburg, Va., 804-732-8911,
Published in The Progress-Index from Apr. 2 to Apr. 3, 2014
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