Cecelia Ann Braswell Reid was born on March 28, 1937 in Daytona Beach, Florida the first girl and second child born to Abraham and Ruby Braswell. Her maternal grandmother took Cecelia’s young life in her hands and influenced her spiritually, mentally and socially. Her first pre-school years were largely spent in Chicago, Illinois with her grandmother, Susie Groom. Upon returning to Daytona Beach, Florida, she begin her formal education at Kaiser Laboratory School located on the campuses of Bethune Cookman College. Her life was influenced again by her third grade teacher, Mrs. Bryant. Mrs. Bryant was a wonderful, spiritual and fair teacher whom ceclian loved just like her grandmother. She graduated from Campbell Street High School in June, 1954. At home Cecelia was an obedient child and did everything she could do to help her parents. She cooked, washed clothes and helped guide her younger sibling in the right direction. She was a hear worker, daughter, student and an excellent friend. In the early 1950’s as a result of a summer tent effort under the direction of Pastor Eric C. Ward and Pastor M.T. Battle, the entire Braswell family, father, mother, four children, aunt and uncle, became members of the Mt. Calvery Seventh-day Adventist Church in Daytona Beach, Florida. Cecelia wanted more than anything to go to Oakwood College, now Oakwood University, a Seventh-day Adventist Christian College (Historically Black College University- HBCU). For a poor African-American girl it was a big impossibility but with God’s help all things are possible. A lady in the church gave her the college entrance fee of $72 and that was the beginning of God’s leading in her life. Cecelia was not a lazy person. She worked in the laundry, cafeteria, in an office, and spend every summer workin as a literature evangelist spreading God’s work n selling the Message Magazine in order to earn money for college fees. She learned to never give up and to persevere. God performed miracle after miracle in answering prayers on her behalf. After five years, Cecelia graduated from Oakwood College in June 1959 with a Bachelors degree in Elementary Education. Cecelia accepted an offer to teach at Bethel and Campostella Heights Seventh-day Adventist Church School in Norfolk, VA. It was for that reason she relocated to Norfolk, Virginia where she met the love of her life, Mr. Elwood W. Reid, Sr. They got married on December 25, 1962, a marital union that lasted more than 56 years. They were married by Pastor James Thomas in his home in the Cavalier Manor section of Portsmouth, VA. Little did they know that they would move into that same neighborhood 14 years later on Valentines Day, February 14, 1976 and purchased a home that they occupied for 43 years. To their union was added two sons, Elwood W. Reid, Jr. and Derek B. Reid. Cecelia’s first five years of teaching in the Adventist church school prepared her for a new teaching position as a third grade teacher in the Norfolk public school system just as they started the process of racial integration. She spent ten very pleasant and happy years at John Marshall Elementary School in Ghent. She always loved working in the Seventh-day Adventist Christian School environment and longed to return. One evening, she received a telephone call from then principle Dean Hunt. Cecelia was told the Potomac Conference of Seventh-day Adventist was looking for an African-American teacher to teach at their local school Tidewater Junior Academy (TJA), now Tidewater Adventist Academy. Obituary
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She was not sure who recommended her but she became the first African-American teach at TJA. It was there that she spent the remaining 24 years of a 39 year teaching career. One of the most gratifying rewards of the “nicest work” was teaching first and second generations of former students as they grow and become church leaders of today; observing former students offer their professional services to the church and the community and seeing how responsible they were in their roles of parenthood. Cecelia received many certificates for outstanding work, certificate of Commission to the Teaching Ministry-Potomac Conference of Seventh-day Adventist, Certificate of Merit from Oakwood College Allegheny East Conference, and the Zapara Award for Excellence in Teaching. Through the years, Cecelia has taught academics to hundreds of students, but her greatest joy came from knowing she helped to lead many to accept God’s great love for all mankind. Her greatest desire is to receive their Great Reward that only Christ can give. Cecelia going the Campostella Heights Seventh-day Adventist Church in 1959 and remained a member until her death. She was very active in church holding various leadership roles and serving on committees. She was a member of the Sanctuary Choir, Deaconess and Head Deaconess, Prison Ministry team member, Fifty Plus Club member, Adventurers Club member, Christian Quilters leader and Sabbath School teacher just to name a few. Cecelia touched many lives through her service in these ministries. On Friday morning, August 23, 2019, she peacefully departed this life and entered into eternal rest where she awaits the Master’s call upon His second coming to earth. She was preceded in death by her parents Abraham Braswell and Ruby Braswell; her husband, Elwood W. Reid, Sr.; her brother Otto Braswell; and sisters Barbara Jean Braswell, and Ruby Smith. Left to honor Cecelia, cherish her memory and remember her life are her sons, Elwood W. Reid, Jr. (Chantay), Derek B. Reid; sister, Annetta Foster (Curtis); Nieces, Rochelle Eddington, Patricia Braswell, Miriam Braswell, Lisa Ranjibar, Wendy Eddington (Gary), Wanda Albritten, Ebony Foster, Renee Norwood, Gina Brown (Bronson II), Alicia Reid-Britt (Joey), Nephews; Otto Braswell, Jr. (deceased), Antonio Braswell, Keith Hunter, Trevor Spivey, Jr. (Annette), Anthony Spivey, Darryl Spivey (Loretta), James M. Reid, III; Great-nephews Joshua and Jared Eddington, Justin and Otha Albritten; Sister-in-law Francis Elaine Spivey; God-daughters Miriam Satterfield Rogers Renika Green adopted daughter Yvette Scarborough; two special friends Joycie White and Mary Freeman and a host of other extended family and friends all of whom have the blessed hope and look forward to spending eternity with her.