Dorothy Mae Manley (Edwards) was born November 27, 1938 in Garysburg, NC to the late Jesse and Mary Ellen (Mitchell) Edwards. She was the first born of 11 children.
At a very young age living at home, she worked alongside her father and some of her siblings on a farm, pulling corn, picking cotton and shucking peanuts. Dorothy, fondly called “Dot” by her family, was close to all of her siblings, especially the youngest: James Otis. They were so close that he was given the name “Little Dot” because “if you saw Dot you saw her baby brother!”
After graduating Gumberry High School in 1956 at the age of 17, Dorothy left home and relocated to Newark, New Jersey where she met and married the love of her life: Jimmie Lee. The story goes that Jimmie Lee was smitten with Dorothy’s beauty. She was described by him as fair skinned and statuesque with long black hair who looked like she had money… Boy was he wrong!
They began dating in March 1958 and by August 8, 1958, they were married. This union was blessed with four children, Antonia, Sonia, James and Denise. They moved to Boston in 1966 where she was employed at a local grocery store in the neighborhood as head cashier. Over the years, Dorothy worked as an electronics assembler with brand name companies such as Raytheon, Teradyne & GTE Sylvania.
While working, she never swayed from caring for her family. She worked full-time while caring for their children. She would drive her children to school, prepare hot meals for dinner and get sleep in between her shifts and caretaking responsibilities.
Dorothy was passionate about bowling and would do so every Saturday. In addition, she enjoyed various activities including: lunch dates with Jimmie, watching ‘Wheel of Fortune’ and relaxing in the shade of her front porch.
In 2006, she retired to care for her husband after he fell ill.
Dorothy joined Greater Zion Church of God in Christ in 2006 and was a faithful member until sickness prevented her from attending. On August 17, 2017, she graduated as the eldest student from the James Darby School of the Bible. One thing for sure, Dorothy was positive that she knew the bible, in and out!
Even well into her elder years, Dorothy was adamant about her maintenance and upkeep. She made sure to always have her hands and feet done and her hair freshly rolled by her daughter Denise (but she strongly disliked waiting under that dryer).
She leaves to cherish her memory, her four children: Antonia Manley-Loving, Sonia, James and Denise Manley, one son-in-law Harold, six grandchildren: LeVar, Andre, Chanel, Gianni, Brandi and Mercedes, three great grandchildren: Andrea, Cam’ron and Santana; three sisters Phyllis Graham, Annie Askew and Thelma Deloatch (Robert) all of North Carolina , two brothers: Jerry Edwards of Georgia; and James Edwards (Carmen) of Brockton and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. She is preceded in death by her husband Jimmie Lee and sisters: Carolyn Pierce, Minnie Thompson, Amie Edwards and Joan Dockery.
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