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JOHNNIE SMITH PERRY
January 27, 1943 ~ November 5, 2023 (age 80) 80 Years Old
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Johnnie Beatrice Smith Perry, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, great-great-grandmother, aunt, cousin, and friend, peacefully gained her wings on Sunday, November 5, 2023.
Johnnie was the only child born to Teddie Matthew and Willie Blanche (Hurd) Smith on January 27, 1943, in Austin, Texas.
Johnnie attended Anderson High School in Austin, Texas. It was there she met her high school sweet and the love of her life, Lawrence O’Dell Perry. Johnnie and Lawrence married their senior year on April 20, 1961, and both graduated with their graduating class of 1961 as husband and wife. Following high school, the two immediately started to build their family and were eventually the proud parents of 7 children.
While raising children, Johnnie found the strength and drive to continue her education graduating from Austin Community College as a Licensed Vocational Nurse on July 29, 1966. For over 50 years she served as a dedicated healthcare nurse working the Intensive Care Unit, the Medical Surgical floor and later retired in 2019 after 20+ years as a nursing supervisor for the Highland Healthcare Facility.
Sister Perry, as so dearly known by her church family, was a dedicated and faithful Christian with a servant’s heart. She accepted Christ at an early age and was baptized at the Friendly Will Baptist Church in Round Rock, Texas. Sister Perry had a passion for music. She faithfully served in her church choir while even traveling with and singing with her singing group “The Original Hymn Revivers” which consisted of her and Lawrence, their mothers, and close family friends. In 1987 her husband Lawrence was called to pastor his first church, Tried Stone Baptist Church in San Antonio, TX. It was then that sister Perry began her Journey as Pastor’s Wife and First Lady. She continued walking with her husband in ministry as First Lady of True Gospel Baptist Church, San Antonio, Texas, and later, Pilgrim Rest Primitive Baptist Church, Austin, Texas until her husband’s passing in 2007. After her husband’s passing, Sister Perry united with St. John Baptist Church, San Antonio, Texas where she faithfully served in many capacities of ministry until her health began to fail.
She was preceded in death by her beloved parents, Teddie Matthew and Willie Blanche Smith; Her daughter and firstborn, Jeannie Michelle Russell, Two grandsons, Ty Russell, and Johnathan Russell, and her beloved husband of 46 years, Pastor Lawrence O’Dell Perry.
Left to cherish her memories are her two sons, Elliott Perry (Jayne), Jason Perry (Heather), four daughters, Jacqueline Bishop (Kevin), Cynthia Guyton (Glen), Marie Perry-Forbes (Alex), Luciana Tease (Anthony), 25 grandchildren, a host of great-grandchildren, relatives, and friends.