Originally created 12/21/06

Bessie Mae Lee Cannon (AUGUSTA, Ga.)



AUGUSTA, Ga. - A Victory Celebration of the Life of Mrs. Bessie Mae Lee Cannon, November 17, 1928 - December 6, 2006, was held on Thursday, December 14, 2006, at 11:00 a.m. at the New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, 1106 West Craig Street, in Tallulah, Louisiana The Reverend Kennie R. Ramsey delivered the eulogy. The Reverend Oscar Wade Hamilton, Jr., was the officiating minister. Bessie Mae Lee Cannon was born on November 17, 1928, to Arthur and Dollie Mac Lee in Tallulah, Louisiana. She confessed Christ at an early age and was baptized by the Reverend A. L. Mitchell. She joined the New Hope Missionary Baptist Church where she served dutifully for over seventy years in various capacities including but not limited to First Lady, Chairperson of the Church and Pastor's Anniversaries, Sunday School Teacher and Pianist, Madison Parish Sunday School Convention Adult Class Teacher, Church Treasurer, Baptist Young People's Union Leader, Mother of the Church, and Choir Member. Valedictorian of her high school class, Bessie attended Southern University and Alcorn State University before graduating with a degree in elementary education from Grambling State University. She proudly often attested to the fact that her hands were used to picking cotton and performing domestic work so that she could earn enough money to help her younger siblings to remain in college. Her sacrifices were honorable, and she went on to earn a master's degree from Texas Southern University. She even earned thirty hours beyond the master's by attending Florida State University and the University of Houston. Mrs. Bessie Cannon flourished as a talented teacher at Wright and Tallulah Elementary Schools, and Reuben McCall Junior High. As a retired educator, she served her community tirelessly by instructing some of Tallulah's best and brightest pre-schoolers in her home and by volunteering to deliver food monthly to various families throughout Madison Parish. Mrs. Cannon's philanthropic efforts included helping to personally pay the Internal Revenue Service Note for the Madison Parish Baptist Association and supporting various charities. Her community activities included serving with distinction as president, secretary, and activities chair of the Rosebud Garden Club; secretary of the Madison Parish Retired Teachers Club; member of the Mt. Alban Union No. 1; District Deputy Grand Matron of the Heroines of Jericho; Associate Matron of the Pride of Madison Court No. 19 Heroines of Jericho, and assistant secretary and Worthy Matron of Star of Madison Chapter No. 57 Order of the Eastern Star. A loving wife and wonderful mother, Bessie made her home a special place for her family and friends. Her children grew up and called her "Blessed." She was called home after a brief illness on December 6, 2006, at 11:35 p.m. at University Hospital in Augusta, Georgia. Bessie was preceded in death by her parents Arthur and Dollie Mac Lee; her husband The ReverendRichard Joseph Cannon; and her sisters Dollie Mae Lee (Joe) Gibson, and Rosa Ann Lee (Samuel) Lynch. Her memory will forever be cherished by daughter Dr. Sandra Suetta Cannon Scott, Augusta, Georgia; son Mr. Calvin Tyrone Cannon, Itta Bena, Mississippi; step-son Mr. Richard Horace Cannon, Tallulah, Louisiana; step-daughter Mrs. Ruth Turner, Chicago, Illinois; brother The Reverend Arthur (Marie) Lee, Jr., Tempe, Arizona; sisters Mrs. Dorothy Lee (H. C.) Coleman, Tallulah, Louisiana, Mrs. Wilma (Johnnie) Hollins, Houston, Texas, Mrs. Clara Caston (Otha) Lynch, Winnsboro, Louisiana; godson Deacon Earl Pinkney, Tallulah, Louisiana; foster grandchildren Chenese, Tyson, and Tyler Williams, Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina; nieces, nephews, and a host of other loving relatives and friends. The family received relatives and friends at the Tallulah-Madison Community Center, Corner of Beech and Neal Streets immediately following the Interment at New Oakwood Cemetery in Fortune Fork, Louisiana. Professional services were entrusted to: McFarland Funeral Home, 1223 Broadway Street, Delhi, Louisiana, 318-878-5087

The Augusta Chronicle-December 21, 2005