Lila Lee Walker, Born Lila Lee Marisette to Mr. and Mrs. John and Lois Marisette on December 8, 1929 in Birmingham Alabama, was a wife, mother, sister and friend. Standing just under six feet tall her slender frame, smooth dark skin, striking beauty, and regal carriage gave her a presence that one could not help but notice whenever she entered a room. Lila was the second eldest of eight children. In her youth she was bright and energetic and excelled in many areas and it became evident that she was capable of doing just about anything she put her mind to, though limited by the race and gender restrictions of her time. She had a love of art and poetry and often recited to her little sisters. She received her early education at Council school, where she developed a lifelong love of reading, attended Parker High and continued her education at Miles College. Under her mother’s tutelage, she learned to sew like a professional seamstress and made most of her own clothing and later sewed for her sisters, daughters and nieces. She served in the United States Army. After moving to New York in the 1960’s she worked as a floor manager at Mays Department Store and later worked 20 years at AT&T until her retirement.
Lila was an excellent cook and hosted family gatherings at her home for every holiday. Whether a Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings or a down home southern barbecue Lila’s table was the place to be. She was an avid reader, and loved music and imparted both of those gifts to her children.
Lila passed into eternity on September 15th. She was preceded in death by her mother and father, Her eldest sister Nelda Palmer (husband Andrew deceased) , her brothers John (Wife Leola) and Felton Marisette and sister Eunice Jordan. She is survived by her Sisters Althea Vines (husband Freddy deceased), Lois Bland and Lola Coleman (Husband Irving) She leaves behind daughters Wylene Fletcher (Husband Bert), Marlene Armstead, Kim Ali (Husband Talib deceased), Genene Rosa (Husband Benny), Jamie Mattos, and her only son Kenneth Walker. She leaves her grandchildren, Jamal Fletcher, Janice Fletcher, Nicole Thomas, Keisha Livingston, Natalie Grayson, Jason Clay (Wife Tanya), Xavier Clay (Wife Nicole), Jessica Mattos, Jiana Mattos, Jasmine Walker, and Kyla Walker. Her great grandchildren Shayla, Sabian, Elijah, Emauri, Jordan, Joshua, Erick, Emory, Elise, Jayla, Elena, Juliana and Elijah. She also leaves a host of nieces, nephews, and other family members and friends. She was loved and will be greatly missed.
At Lila’s request we would like to share the last stanza of one of her favorite poems, “Thanatopsis” by William Cullen Bryant.
So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan, which moves
To that mysterious realm, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,
Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams.