Geraldine Betty Williams was born on January 26, 1920 to William Edward Jewett and Margaret Ampy. She began her childhood years in Buxton, Iowa; and her family relocated to Des Moines when she was nine years old.
Geraldine completed her general studies at East High School. With the intentions of continuing her education on a collegiate level she attended Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) where she received her Associate’s Degree. She was a believer that if she was going somewhere, she was going all the way. Her educational career continued at Drake University where she attained her Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education. It was always her dream to be an educator and making that a reality was very important to her.
Geraldine was employed by the Des Moines Public Schools where she served as a teacher for 20 years. For an additional 18 years she worked in the Foster Grandparents program of the United Way. Her heart was always big for serving, especially for children.
For a number of years Geraldine was a member of the Union Missionary Baptist Church under the leadership of first, Rev. Seymour Gaines and then, Rev. Dr. Henry Isaiah Thomas. While a member at Union she served on the Mother’s and Usher Boards.
Geraldine loved to shop. She also loved to travel, go on cruises and did we say SHOP?. She made annual trips to Las Vegas to visit her daughter, Jane. She loved the family cookouts; and when she cooked her Tuna Casserole, liver and onions, pineapple upside down cake and green beans were her special contributions. She enjoyed decorating her home and kept every thing immaculate. There wasn’t an empty corner of the room. Geraldine was very structured with finances and knew what it took to take care of her family. As a single parent she provided well for her family. She did day work before going into teaching.
Geraldine passed away on October 14, 2017. Geraldine lived life to the fullest with 97 golden years. She was proceeded in death by her parents; infant sisters, Iola and Darlene; sisters, Evelyn and Margaret; brothers, John and William Jr.
She is survived by her children Jerry B Madison, Jane (Howard) Baker, Kathryn (Gerald) Dysart, Carol Williams and Donald C. Williams; her grand children, Jerry, Shery, Todd, Kenna, Randy (Glenia), Denise, Justin, Jason, Howard II, Deetra, Mia, Michael (Michelle), Sondrea (Jerry), Adam Travis, Steve, Mikisha, Antonia and Anthony “Tony” and Jhauntae “Nikki”; 36 great grandchildren, 8 great great grandchildren; a sister 102 years strong, Kathryn Beverly and a host of extended family and friends.