Mrs. Elease Gillespie Washington, affectionately known as Niecy, went to sleep in Jesus at her home on Thursday January 7, 2021; she was 78 years old.
Niecy was born to the late Lula Pearl Herron and the late Tommie Lee Gillespie on October 19, 1942 in Egypt, Mississippi. She relocated with her family to Aberdeen, Mississippi where she spent her childhood and received her formal education. She graduated from Shivers Junior-Senior High School in 1962. Shortly after graduation she moved to South Bend and joined family and friends from Aberdeen who had already moved to South Bend. In 1969, she and the late George Washington were united in holy matrimony.
Niecy loved God and her family beyond what words can describe. She loved to be around immediate and extended family. Any time she spent with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren was time spent laughing, joking, and gleaning from her love and wisdom. She had a very keen sense of humor and was always doing or saying something to get a smile or a laugh.
Niecy was blessed with the gift of taking care of others including children and adults with disabilities. She served these populations in the South Bend community for many years; she was a for teacher at Head Start and a Behavioral Health Technician at Corvilla, Inc. She also had a passion for caring for the sick and elderly and spent the past 30 years doing so by being employed at Home Instead, St. Joseph VNA Home Care and many, many private duty assignments.
Niecy came to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ when she was eight years old at Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church in Gibson, MS. She loved the Lord and served Him for many years at Berean SDA Church in South Bend. She shared her extraordinary gifts of interior design, beautification, hospitality, and singing. Over those years, she also served as Church Mother at Living Waters Church of God in Christ; she also shared her gifts and talents at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church having very special family ties in these churches. She was always excited to serve God, show His love, and share His gifts whenever and wherever God gave her the opportunity.
Niecy leaves behind many, many people to mourn her passing, including her children; Cleo (and Marla) Washington of Montgomery, Alabama; Rosetta (and Anthony) Golden, Patrick Earl Washington, Shaunta (and James) Burris, and James Christopher Washington all of South Bend; her grandchildren, Cleo George and Carson Kennedy Washington both of Montgomery; Kendrich Golden and Clinton Odom of South Bend; Lacy (Tony) Egho of Indianapolis, Indiana; Patrick Rashad Washington of South Bend; Giahne (Scott) Knowles of Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Nicolas Johnson of Decatur, Illinois, and Isaac Johnson of Chicago, Illinois; great-grandchildren: Amyah, Jayvion, and Niveah Washington of Indianapolis; Kingstn, Princeton, Reign, and Duke Knowles all of Fort Bragg; her very special nieces; Darlene Townsend of Mishawaka, Indiana; Peggy Elzey-Sutton of Elkhart, Indiana; Josie Elzey of Louisiana, Kimberly Elzey also of Elkhart; and Staci Elzey-Ose of Tacoma, Washington; her siblings: LaDon (and Eddie) Bailey of Thaxton, Mississippi; Linda Washington of Westland, Michigan; Yvonne Johnson of Leesburg, Georgia, Brenda (and Leon) Lewis of Los Angeles, California, Angelo Gillespie of Las Vegas, Nevada, and Charles (and Linda) Gillespie of Ypsilanti, Michigan.
Along with her husband and parents, others she loved who preceded her in death include a sister, Mary Ann Meadows Washington and brothers, Mike and Edward Gillespie, and one very special nephew, Christopher Meadows.
She touched the lives of countless people and will be truly missed.
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