Memorial services for Billie Olen Stringer Bryant will be held at 2:00 p.m., Sunday November 15, at Yellow Creek Baptist Church in Murrayville, Georgia. Dr. Bruce Morgan and Reverend Ricky Stone will officiate. Ms. Bryant was called into the arms of her Heavenly Father Thursday, November 12,2020.
Ms. Bryant was born on December 9,1927, at Young Harris, Union County, Georgia. She graduated from Cass High School in Cartersville, Georgia in 1944. She wed William Rufus Bryant, Jr. on July 25, 1945, and remained in that blessed union until Junior's death on May 3, 2015. She is survived by her six children: Martha Paulette Parks (and husband Charles), William Rufus Bryant III, Hilda Latrelle Clark (and husband Paul), Teresa Hedy Van Mol (and husband Gordon), Thomas Ottie Bryant (and wife Robin), and Elizabeth Faithe Reed (and husband Elton); as well as by sister Jean Priest, thirteen grandchildren, fourteen great-grandchildren, and 10 nieces and nephews.
Billie Bryant was a loving wife, mother, neighbor, and devoted child of God. She graduated from high school as the fastest typist/shorthand writer in her class, which helped earn her a scholarship to an Atlanta business school upon graduation; she chose instead to marry and start a family at age seventeen. Though wooed by many a gent due to her charm and stunning beauty, Junior Bryant won her heart. After marriage, she worked at a drugstore in Cartersville, saving enough money to buy her husband the first piece of equipment needed to start his own business-- a logging truck.
Ms. Bryant was a woman of varied skills and passions, among them gardening, canning, preserving, curing and smoking meat. She was an expert seamstress, and made wedding gowns and veils for her daughters to be married in, as well as earning money to support her family by sewing for others in the community. She churned her own butter, made her own cottage cheese and buttermilk, canned and preserved fruit and vegetables grown in her garden. Her reputation was such that people would travel from other parts of the surrounding area- as far as Atlanta- to purchase some of "Mrs. Bryant's" homemade butter. A true cottage industry pioneer by today's standards!
Billie Bryant played piano beautifully, often at St. Paul Methodist Church. She taught Sunday school and Bible school at Yellow Creek Baptist Church. She served as a room mother for many years at Lanier Elementary School, often surprising the children in multiple classrooms with homemade treats on special occasions and holidays.
Upon news of illness or death, Ms. Bryant could regularly be counted on to be among the first to comfort the affected family with food and a compassionate ear.
Billie held a lifelong fascination with history and the connection of bygone days to the present. She was both a genealogist enthusiast and a rich oral historian, always eager to share her findings with family and friends. She and sister Jean spent countless hours on Long Branch absorbing stories from aunts, uncles, and other elders-- her storytelling grandfathers Tom Stringer and Chap Caldwell captivating the imaginations of the young sisters. The rich oral history she spent a lifetime acquiring was eagerly shared, enriching family gatherings, and instilling meaning, continuity, and a sense of place to her large family.
Her insatiable curiosity about the past blended harmoniously with her skill set, and she excelled at restoration- be it furniture, glassware, fabric, or antique dolls. Her antique doll collection was impressive, many of which were restored or reproduced by her own hand.
Most importantly, Billie Olen Stringer Bryant possessed a deep-rooted desire to do for others. She was a woman of abiding faith in the wonders and glory of God. Her poetry would spill forth effortlessly in prayer, and she was frequently called upon by ministers to deliver benediction in her inspirational style. In good times and bad, she summoned everything in her power to nurture, guide, and protect her family.
She enhanced the lives of so many in her lifetime, and her loving spirit lives on in the hearts of all she touched.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Yellow Creek Baptist Church.
Those wishing to send online condolences to the family may do so at littledavenport.com
Little & Davenport Funeral Home and Crematory, 355 Dawsonville Highway, SW, Gainesville, Georgia 30501 is in charge of arrangements.
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