On Saturday, August 10, 1940, at 10:53 a.m., Shirley Carter made her arrival and was the first child born to the late Ananias and Inez Carter of Yazoo City, Mississippi. At an early age, Shirley relocated to Michigan with family. She was educated in the South Haven Public School system. Later, Shirley met and married the love of her life, the distinguished James O. Wilkins, Sr., and to this union nine beloved children were born. They enjoyed 40 years of marital bliss until James made his heavenly transition on February 29, 1996.
Shirley Wilkins worked at South Haven Countryside Nursing Home as a Certified Nurse’s Assistant for over 20 years caring for those who were not able to care for themselves.
In 1976, Shirley Wilkins began her walk with God and became a member of Pentecostal Temple Church of God in Christ under the leadership of the late Bishop Fred L. Cunningham, I. In 2005, Shirley Wilkins continued her labor of love serving as the Co-Church Mother at Resurrection Life Ministries under the leadership of her son, Pastor Joe O. Wilkins, Sr.
Shirley Wilkins was an inspiration to the neighborhood with her kind words, love, and prayers. She was a fervent supporter of her family, church, and community. Over the years, she became affectionately known to many in the community as “Grandma Shirley” a moniker befitting her nurturing and giving spirit. She was truly loved and adored by all. Shirley Wilkins had impeccable style and taste. She was a wise, sophisticated, holy, virtuous woman of God, the epitome of grace, a “gem”, more precious than rubies.
Shirley Wilkins was called from her earthly labor to her heavenly reward when she peacefully departed this life on Tuesday, May 14, 2019, with her cherished children at her bedside.
Shirley Wilkins is proceeded in death by her parents, Ananias Carter and Inez Carter-Partee; her husband, James O. Wilkins, Sr.; sister, Ernestine Fisher; sisters-in-law, Gladys Walker and Missionary, Viola Settles; brother-in-law, Joseph W. Wilkins; son, Michael Wilkins; daughter, April Smith; grandson, Jason Clarke; and great-grandson, Jaylin “Kyree” Hatter.
Shirley Wilkins leaves to cherish her memories and carry on her legacy: her children, James O. (Patricia) Wilkins, Jr., Wade Wilkins, Darlene (Michael) Batton, Esther Wilkins, Joe O. (Letitia) Wilkins, Sr., David Wilkins, September (Ahmmad) Goodwin, and Pamela Wilkins; her sister, Lorraine Hollin; nineteen grandchildren; thirty-one great-grandchildren; three great-great grandchildren, many nieces, nephews, cousins, and dear friends.
Shirley J. Wilkins, “Well done thou good and faithful servant.”
Wake will be held from 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM on Saturday, May 25, 2019 at the Greater Pentecostal Temple COGIC in South Haven. Funeral services will follow the wake at 12:00 PM at the church. Shirley will be laid to rest at Lakeview Cemetery in South Haven. Kindly share your thoughts and memories on the family's online guestbook.