I was the fourth gift of life and blessing given my parents Briscoe and Minnie Lee Bailey McClure on July16, 1936 in San Antonio, Texas. I was given the name Betty Jean.
I accepted Christ at an early age after the death of my mother. I was attending Vacation Bible School and was baptized at First Baptist Church by the Rev. D. Manning Jackson.
A few years later, I transferred my membership to New Light Baptist Church, Dr. P. S. Wilkinson, Pastor. I was an active member of the Youth Choir under the leadership of Sister Lela Smith, Vacation Bible School and Sunday School under the leadership of Deacon W.K. Singletary; Baptist Training Union; and Girls Auxiliary under the leadership of Sis. Adena Franks.
I received my education in the San Antonio Independent School District; graduating from the All-Black Phillis Wheatley High School, May 1953 ranking 5th in my class.
I received an Associate of Arts Degree from St. Phillips Jr. College in May 1955 and enrolled at Huston-Tillotson College (University), Austin, Texas where I remained on the Dean’s Honor Roll graduating with a B.A. Degree in Elementary Education, May 1958.
I was united in Holy Matrimony to Ernest Samuel Greenwood on May 4, 1956 in San Antonio, Texas. God blessed us with three beautiful children; Ernest, Jr., Harold Lee and Sylvia Ann. We loved our children and provided for all their “needs” and gave them many of their “wants”.
Due to Ernest, Sr.’s military career, we were able to travel within the United States and abroad to Altus AFB, Oklahoma, Bitburg AFB Germany, Walker AFB, New Mexico and Elmendorf AFB, Alaska.
I began my teaching career in the American Dependent School District at Bitburg Air Force Base, Germany; serving as a substitute teacher and later becoming a fulltime first grade teacher being the first N.C.O.’s wife to be hired as a full-time teacher there.
After completing our tour in Germany, we returned to San Antonio and I was hired by the San Antonio Independent School District, being the first African American teacher at Crockett Elementary School. After four years of teaching English to Hispanic preschoolers, I resigned to join Ernest, Sr. at his new duty station at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska. I taught second grade for the Anchorage Borough School District for three years. While in Anchorage, I did graduate work at the University of Alaska with a concentration in Reading and Math. I co-authored a math resource book for Elementary Teachers which was used by the Anchorage Borough School District.
The summer of 1972 brought me back home and to continue my teaching career at Laura Steele Elementary School in the San Antonio Independent School District. I also enrolled at St. Philips College at night to further my love for sewing and received an Associate of Arts Degree in Tailoring.
After thirty-two years of teaching, I retired May 31, 1995. Since my retirement, I have volunteered at many Elementary and Jr. High Schools in the San Antonio Independent School District.
During my adult life, I was a member of the Coliseum Park Baptist Church for 32 years. I was an active teacher in Sunday School, Baptist Training Union, Senior Missions, Vacation Bible School, Adult Choir and Deaconess.
In 1988, I became a charter member of Maranatha Baptist Church, later named Maranatha Bible Church, was a blessing to my life. I was totally involved beginning with day one (1). My ministries were a powerful force with my walk with the Lord: Church historian, first church photographer, adult choir, prayer meeting and bible study participant, Vacation Bible School teacher; tutor for grades 1-4, seamstress, deaconess, volunteer receptionist and Silver Praise Dancer. I also volunteered at the Bexar County Adult Detention Center beginning in October 1999.
Easter Sunday 2014, I became a First Believer at Agape Christian Church. My life here has been centered about Service and Ministry, Bible Study and Prayer. I have continued volunteering at Bexar County Adult Detention Center, Pecan Valley Rehabilitation Center, Agape Adult Choir, Doorkeeper Ministry, Women’s Small Group Ministry, Hour of Power Prayer Ministry, weekly prayer and bible study and Silver Saints Praise Dance Ministry.
I have truly been blessed by my Greenwood, Hicks and Mitchell Families for 65 years. We all have gone through a lot together and we have shared genuine love for one another. Continue loving each other and stay in touch with each other.
My parents, brother James Wilbert, sister Doris and a baby brother(infant), preceded me in death. My husband for 54 years preceded me in death on May 19, 2010.
I leave to embrace my legacy and precious memories my children, Ernest, Jr. (wife, Tashun), Harold Lee and Sylvia Ann. Grandchildren, Brandon and Andrea Greenwood, Brittany and Eric Dawson, Brent and Annette Hildebrand, Shanteil Greenwood and Camille Greenwood; Great Grandchildren, Breya Dawson, Eliahs Dawson, Maxwell Hildebrand, Zaquoia Greenwood, DeAndre Greenwood and Jaxson Greenwood. Brother; Robert B. McClure, Sr., Las Vegas, Nevada; Sisters, Ruby M. Cooks (Vernon) and Billie J. Perryman, sister in-law, Mary Greenwood, nieces, nephews and cousins, Greenwood-Hicks-Mitchell families, my spiritual children; Elder Dennis and Deborah Robinson, Paul and Michele Hoskins, Deacon Charles and Willette Hopkins, Minister Kenneth and Reba Sneed, Rev. J.D. and Brenda Sanders and God Son, Jaden Draper.
If I have helped somebody as I’ve passed along, If I have cheered somebody with a word or song, If I have shown somebody they were traveling wrong, then my living has not been in vain.
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