Mr. Sewonie Mincy Sr. was born on May 18, 1926, to the union of the late Rueben Mincy and Carrie (Horton) Mincy. He was a beloved husband, dad, grandfather called Papa, brother, uncle, and friend who departed this life on Saturday, July 30, 2022 at his home in South Bend, Indiana with family.
Sewonie met the love of his life, Mamie Wigfall, as a child. They grew up together in the small town of Register, Georgia and attended the same church and elementary school; however, they did not start courting one another until their late teenage years. “Our first date was a concert by a teenaged James Brown, before he became a household name.” Sewonie, referring to Mamie, said, “Man could she dance! Then I said to myself about dancing with her, “I couldn’t, but it didn’t stop me from courting her. Mamie was so smart and pretty. It took me a long time to get up the nerve to ask her to be my wife." In June 1950, Sewonie Sr., and Mamie Wigfall entered a covenant relationship of love and holy matrimony. They relocated to South Bend in 1953 to start a family.
In June 2020, they celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary. Despite their trials and tribulations, they remained faithful to one another throughout those 70 years. They honored their marriage vows: “…to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, [until parted by death], ‘till death do us part.” They kept the faith. Amen!
Sewonie Sr. was raised in a Christian home and confessed his hope in Jesus Christ and was baptized at an early age. He became a member of the New Bethel Baptist Church in Register. When he moved to South Bend, he became a member at Pilgrim Baptist Church under the leadership of the late Rev. Charles G. Rowlett from 1955 to 1989, and Rev. H. Gregory Haygood from 1990 until he went home to be with the Lord. Sewonie Sr. was a member of the church choir and helped with the church softball league. He was instrumental in helping the kids get to practice on time and driving them to church softball games around the city. He gave the kids moral support and encouragement to endure the rigors of sports activities.
Sewonie Sr. was employed with Christman Construction and Rieth-Riley Construction Companies for 50 years. He earned awards for his dedicated service. He was also an entrepreneur who worked as a barber, mechanic, and newspaper route carrier for the South Bend Tribune for over 20 years.
Sewonie Sr. was a family man who loved to spend time with his wife and kids. He maintained a strong connection with family and was always present and available to care for the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of his family. He took his family to church every Sunday morning and disciplined the children when they needed correction. He always made sure they had shelter, food, and clothing. He was instrumental in the supervisory role of hiring contract laborers to construct an expansion on the family home on Wellington Street. This gave the family more space in the kitchen and bedrooms which was greatly needed for a household of eight. He always set time aside for family vacations and would take the family on trips to Georgia, and Silver Beach on holidays. He also loved spending time outdoors and gardening. He was a neighborhood icon and greeted everyone with a smile and words of encouragement.
Sewonie Sr. leaves to cherish his fond memory: one sister, Ida; six sons, Sewonie Jr., Perry (Cora), Dewayne, Gregory, Michael and Alan; one daughter, Bettye Sue; two daughters-in-law, Cora and Karla; six grandchildren; Syrena, Asyria, Larenda, Darrius, Michael and Ayunna; several great-grandchildren; two sisters-in-law, Mary and Ruth, along with a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
Sewonie Sr. was preceded in death by his wife, Mamie Wigfall Mincy; his mother and father, Rueben, and Carrie; brothers, Gatson, Rufinis, Silas, Riley, Henry, Gary and Martin; and sisters, Catherine, Ruby and Sally.
His love and legacy will live on in the hearts of his family and others who knew and loved him.
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