NOMINATION TO THE COLUMBUS HALL OF FAME
I will nominate Dr. Howard & Serena M. Wilson for the
City of Columbus, Ohio Hall of Fame Spring 2015.
I am asking friends, co-works & family to write me a note with a something you learned from either of them, funny story, a fond memory or what ever you want to say.
I am putting the notes in two books
For my father:
"Son of a Coal Miner & West Virginia Pioneers"
For my Mother:
"Serena Wilson's Golden Legacy"
BORN: April 12, 1933 - DEATH: June 1, 2013
"Together Again Celebration of Life"
was June 15, 2013 10:00 am at
Bethel Temple Ministries Pastor Dane Clark,
2840 Lockbourne Rd Columbus OH 43207
Retired Army Lt. Col., Husband, Father, Entrepreneur, Mentor
Born April 12, 1933 to Louise & Thomas J. Wilson in Bramwell,
West Virginia. In high school, he excelled in sports
He played 13 different instruments and was the concert and
marching band director. He played both football and directed
the marching band during the football game’s half-times.
Howard Lee was one of four teenagers selected to play for the
WV/VA Baseball League and was awarded the Babe Ruth Foundation
Award for excelling in 3 different major sports.
He was salutatorian of Bluestone HS Class of 1951.
Howard pledged Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. at
Tau Chapter of WVSC.
He participated in ROTC and graduated from WVSC with a
BA in Music and was lead in the ROTC Choir under the
direction Prince Amhed Williams.
He married Serena M. Strother after a 3 year courtship.
The bride was given away by the president of WVSC,
Dr. Wallace & Serena’s older half-brother * Fred Strother,
witnessed by the Wilson family and all their collegiate friends.
* (In 2010 confirmed by U.S. Census Fred was her nephew)
He received his Masters Degree when he was stationed
in KY and his honorary Doctorate of Law Degree from
West Virginia State University after he assisted in changing
the WVS College to a WCS University.
He was the 1st National President of WVSU Alumni Association.
He and his wife Serena (Strother) Wilson were happily
married May 28th, 1955 at the
Christ the King Catholic Church in Dunbar, WV.
Their children are daughters Maria Denese Wilson-Tate,
Teresa & husband Calvin G. Kemp, Jr.,
Jasmine adopted daughter (great granddaughter)
and their late son Howard Anthony Wilson.
The grandchildren are the late Angel Coleman, Stephen
& wife La Toya Wilson, Tanisha Thomas, Calvin H. Kemp,
Kir Kemp Whatley, Amber Wilson, Natasha Wilson Sullivan.
Howard & Serena’s great grand children are Jamel Thomas
Joyce, Odell, Anthony, Keante, Stephen Howard Wilson Jr.,
Trey Yates, Daniel Tyler Wilson, Brandon Black, James Antley.
Ret. US Army Lt. Col., he served in Korea, Germany, Vietnam & USA.
His decorations include Meritorious Service, Bronze Star,
Air Medal with 5 Oak Leaf Clusters &
Gallantry Cross Medal with Palms to name a few.
After serving 20 years, he retired, moved to Columbus, OH
& worked 20 years for the Department of Public Safety as
Deputy Safety Director where he supervised the Administration
Operations of the Divisions of Police and Fire Departments
City of Columbus, OH.
Howard, Serena & Teresa Kemp (their daughter), were
co-owners of Plantation Quilts & Gifts. Together they
did exhibitions, historic presentations, and preservation
work of the families European, African, Gullah-Geechee
& Appalachian nationwide cultural contributions.
Teresa continues exhibiting the family legacy.
Member of the Path Ministry, Silver Honoree Club WVSU,
inducted in the WVSC ROTC Hall of Fame in 1984,
Life member Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.,
Kappa Alpha Psi Columbus Alumni Chapter,
WVSU Tau Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi,
Airport Golf Course Rainmaker Golf Club,
NAACP, Liberty High School Alumni Assoc.,
Inducted in WV Black High School Hall of Fame,
WVSU State University Foundation Board
Honorary Director (Retired),
2005 WVSU Alumnus of the Year
In Lieu of Flowers
Send donations to Wilson Jefferson Scholarship Fund
WVSU Foundation Inc.
200 Erickson Alumni Center
P.O. Box 1000 Institute, WV 25112
Kappa Alpha Psi
Kenneth Howard Endowed Scholarship Fund
P.O. Box 151232 Columbus, Ohio 43215
Link for more information:
Memorial Photos on Face Book:
UGRR Secret Quilt Museum
Art History Maker
March 18, 1934 - Feburary 9, 2012
Wife, Mother, Quilter, Historian, Researcher
It was prior to him being commissioned as a new
Lieutinant in the US Army and going to
Baumholder, West Germany as his first assignment.
She later graduated from Bluefield State College
in Bluefield, WV in June of 1968 with a B.S
degree in Elementary Education.
After retiring from the Columbus Board of Education in 2000,
she continued being a faithful member of many organizations
and her passion for history research and quilting.
Serena was co-owner and CEO of the Plantation Quilts & Gifts.
As a family, they have conducted programs and workshops
telling how the Farrow-McDaniel Quilt Code, handed down
through her family, helped enslaved
people escape from Southern plantations.
Since starting the lectures in 1970's, they have conducted over
4,000 programs in colleges, universities, libraries, historical societies,
quilting groups, NPS sites and private and governmental
organizations throughout the United States.
Serena's paternal grandfather David Richardson Strother's
had Rockhill Plantation, one of the highest grossing in SC 1850-1960.
David Richardson Strother b. 1814 - d. 1870
When the Strother family had a reunion in Edgefield, SC the
Serena heard stories about David and his granddaughter
Sallie Strother (DAR Historian) married a Hollingsworth.
Every Saturday Milton, Serena's dad, took Sallie ice cream
he would purchase (from the White only store).
My mother said the store owner would say
"Mr. Strother you know you can't bring those little
colored chillin in here! He would say,
"Hush now and get thier ice cream" And he did.
Sallies granddaughter, Lynn Booram (Edgefield Historian)
did a great presentation at the Family Reunion in Edgefield, SC and when asked how she knew so much about our family...
She replied "I'm your cousin Lynn!"
Everyone laughed and and my mother ran to give her a hug.
In 2005, she opened the UGRR Secret Quilt Code Museum
Exhibit in Atlanta, GA with Howard and her daughter,
Teresa Kemp who continues doing the UGRR Secret
Quilt Code Museum Traveling Exhibits.
Serena wrote several articles that were
published about her ancesters in
America, as Glynn County, GA slaves,
Peter and Eliza Farrow, formerly Igbo
and Eliza from Dahomey, were called
the Gullah-Geechee people.
They purchased their freedom following
the death of their second owner and worked
as abolitionist via the Underground Railroad.
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Golden Soror,
National Museum of African American History and Culture,
Bluefield State College, Columbus Kappa Alpha Psi Silhouettes, Drayton Hall Historic Society,
Friends of Freedom, Edgefield Historic Society,
Liberty High School, OSU Alumni Association, Martin Luther King Center, Morgan State University,
National UGRR Freedom Center
Life Member, National NAACP, Quilter’s for Christ,
Perish House Quilters, OSU Penn Women,
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture,
Wayne State University Alumni Association,
WVSU Alumni Association,
WVSU Alumni Asosciation Columbus, OH Chapter
Inductee West Virginia High School Hall of Fame.