Photography

       


Brenda K. Rhodes

November 3, 1952 ~ January 21, 2018 (age 65)

A devoted Christian, Brenda was a lover of people and a sister-friend to so many. Conversations with her were sprinkled with encouragement, praise and sincere guidance. Her heart was pure and untarnished by any trials she experienced. One could never forget her spirit, yet it was humble and meek.

Raised in the heart of Baltimore City, her “stomping grounds” were in East Baltimore, just walking distance from her church. Her parents, the late Tarry Lee, Sr. and the late Florence Estelle Lee welcomed  her into this world on November 3, 1952.  She was the 5th of 6 children. Alongside her sister, Delphine, she graced the hallways of Baltimore City Public Schools: Henderson Elementary,  Lombard Junior High, and Dunbar Senior High, graduating in the class of 1972. She went on to obtain an Associate’s degree in Early Childhood from Baltimore City Community College. Brenda accepted Jesus Christ in her heart as a child, and was an active member of the Faith Baptist Church for her entire life.

No sisters could be tighter than she and Delphine. Their classmates knew them as a pair, often confusing their names but never their personalities. And in the pair, she was known as “the good one.” From hours of listening to their mommy talk, her children can easily recount many stories of how Delphine would welcome trouble and Brenda would beg her to do the right thing. For when the moment came for Delphine’s punishments, Brenda would cry from the pain, as well.  

Brenda reverenced each of her older siblings, uniquely. Tarry, Jr., she loved for his smooth nature and love of big cars. Betty, she often referred to as “Mommy,” because her advice was as golden as a mother’s to her. Eugene, she praised for his work in the service, and his love for music and snacks. And Amos, was marked by his gift of endless conversation. Amongst the siblings, she answered to cherished nicknames including “Bubbie” and “Bimbo.”

On March 20, 1983, she married her sweetheart, Calvin Rhodes, and the two raised their children in Baltimore City. Calvin is left with endless memories of the times they shared, not limited to helping their kids with homework at the dining room table, taking their daily walks around the neighborhood and travelling to the World Famous Lexington Market for lunch on the weekends. In 35 years of marriage, her husband tells of how the two only spent a mere 2 nights apart. Describing her love as second to no other, her children appreciate her most for being a model of Christianity, faith, and genuineness. She took time to have nurturing, individual conversations with her children, sharing stories, morals and life lessons. She was an avid participant in their lives, present for school assemblies, graduations, and surgeries.  Her love overflowed hospital rooms in two major events in their lives: a kidney transplant from Crystal to Michael, and the birth of Crystal’s first child.

Walking into Faith Baptist church, one was bound to be greeted by lifelong usher, Brenda Rhodes.  Her greeting at the door, warm in nature, was like no other. She knew people by name and family bloodline. Not only was she a Senior Usher for her entire adult life, she also led the Junior Ushers for many, many years. Brenda loved to march, and the Usher Anniversaries were a highlight in her year. Her most memorable church stories told of her childhood attendance at BTU, the God Specializers choir, and her happiness while watching her children’s recitations during Christmas, Easter and Children’s Day programs.

Brenda Rhodes was a woman of routine and structure. Each day of the week had its own assignment, and only vacations allowed her to comfortably veer away from her schedule. Sundays were for church, visiting her elderly friends and family, and cooking large meals for her family. Monday, the one day she sat still, was for catching up on her favorite movies, like It’s a Wonderful Life, Cabin in the Sky, and Imitation of Life. On Tuesdays, she washed her white clothes, Wednesdays…her light colored clothes, and Thursdays…her dark colored clothes. She cleaned her house from top to bottom every Thursday afternoon: scrubbing floors, wiping down walls, and dusting every fixture. She was known to catch a crumb of food before it had a chance to hit the floor. Friday was her day for outings: travelling to 3-4 supermarkets to catch bargains on food to feed her family, and talk with friends who worked in those familiar establishments. When Saturday came, she set up her ironing board and starch, ironing all of the clothes she had washed throughout the week. After retiring in 2016, she spent her days with her baby granddaughter and made sure to have dinner at a restaurant at least once per week.

Each summer, she travelled to Farmville, Virginia for the first Saturday in August to attend the Turn Out and that Sunday’s Homecoming church service. Here she fellowshipped, danced, sang and conversed with hundreds of cousins and family friends. This was her annual vacation, and she took her husband and her kids every year. On the drive down, she told stories of this same ride as a child, hating to spend summers in “the country with no plumbing,” sleeping on beds of straw, being ever fearful of farm animals, and hearing her mom say, “Tarry, take the kids through the tunnel.” More recently, she raved of her bucket list trip to Disney World in 2017.

Brenda’s loving personality demanded friendships everywhere she went. In her various jobs in factories, she was highly respected for her love of God and ability to make everyone around her felt good. Her neighborhood friends adored her refreshing conversations. Her elderly friends appreciated her comforting visits. And even her children’s friends enjoyed her advice and guidance, affectionately calling her Ma, Mama Brenda, B-Money and BR.

Here to reminisce fond memories, happy times, and cherished lessons and morals, she leaves behind: one who calls her wife, Calvin; three who call her mom, Michael, Crystal and Calvin; two who call her Grandma, Patterson and Briana; four who call her sister, Betty, Eugene, Amos and Delphine; one who calls her best friend, Angela; two who call her niece, Aunt Agnes and Aunt Emma; many in-laws, nieces, nephews, and cousins; and even more friends.

A devoted Christian, Brenda was a lover of people and a sister-friend to so many. Conversations with her were sprinkled with encouragement, praise and sincere guidance. Her heart was pure and untarnished by any trials she experienced. One could never forget her spirit, yet it was humble and meek.

Raised in the heart of Baltimore City, her “stomping grounds” were in East Baltimore, just walking distance from her church. Her parents, the late Tarry Lee, Sr. and the late Florence Estelle Lee welcomed  her into this world on November 3, 1952.  She was the 5th of 6 children. Alongside her sister, Delphine, she graced the hallways of Baltimore City Public Schools: Henderson Elementary,  Lombard Junior High, and Dunbar Senior High, graduating in the class of 1972. She went on to obtain an Associate’s degree in Early Childhood from Baltimore City Community College. Brenda accepted Jesus Christ in her heart as a child, and was an active member of the Faith Baptist Church for her entire life.

No sisters could be tighter than she and Delphine. Their classmates knew them as a pair, often confusing their names but never their personalities. And in the pair, she was known as “the good one.” From hours of listening to their mommy talk, her children can easily recount many stories of how Delphine would welcome trouble and Brenda would beg her to do the right thing. For when the moment came for Delphine’s punishments, Brenda would cry from the pain, as well.  

Brenda reverenced each of her older siblings, uniquely. Tarry, Jr., she loved for his smooth nature and love of big cars. Betty, she often referred to as “Mommy,” because her advice was as golden as a mother’s to her. Eugene, she praised for his work in the service, and his love for music and snacks. And Amos, was marked by his gift of endless conversation. Amongst the siblings, she answered to cherished nicknames including “Bubbie” and “Bimbo.”

On March 20, 1983, she married her sweetheart, Calvin Rhodes, and the two raised their children in Baltimore City. Calvin is left with endless memories of the times they shared, not limited to helping their kids with homework at the dining room table, taking their daily walks around the neighborhood and travelling to the World Famous Lexington Market for lunch on the weekends. In 35 years of marriage, her husband tells of how the two only spent a mere 2 nights apart. Describing her love as second to no other, her children appreciate her most for being a model of Christianity, faith, and genuineness. She took time to have nurturing, individual conversations with her children, sharing stories, morals and life lessons. She was an avid participant in their lives, present for school assemblies, graduations, and surgeries.  Her love overflowed hospital rooms in two major events in their lives: a kidney transplant from Crystal to Michael, and the birth of Crystal’s first child.

Walking into Faith Baptist church, one was bound to be greeted by lifelong usher, Brenda Rhodes.  Her greeting at the door, warm in nature, was like no other. She knew people by name and family bloodline. Not only was she a Senior Usher for her entire adult life, she also led the Junior Ushers for many, many years. Brenda loved to march, and the Usher Anniversaries were a highlight in her year. Her most memorable church stories told of her childhood attendance at BTU, the God Specializers choir, and her happiness while watching her children’s recitations during Christmas, Easter and Children’s Day programs.

Brenda Rhodes was a woman of routine and structure. Each day of the week had its own assignment, and only vacations allowed her to comfortably veer away from her schedule. Sundays were for church, visiting her elderly friends and family, and cooking large meals for her family. Monday, the one day she sat still, was for catching up on her favorite movies, like It’s a Wonderful Life, Cabin in the Sky, and Imitation of Life. On Tuesdays, she washed her white clothes, Wednesdays…her light colored clothes, and Thursdays…her dark colored clothes. She cleaned her house from top to bottom every Thursday afternoon: scrubbing floors, wiping down walls, and dusting every fixture. She was known to catch a crumb of food before it had a chance to hit the floor. Friday was her day for outings: travelling to 3-4 supermarkets to catch bargains on food to feed her family, and talk with friends who worked in those familiar establishments. When Saturday came, she set up her ironing board and starch, ironing all of the clothes she had washed throughout the week. After retiring in 2016, she spent her days with her baby granddaughter and made sure to have dinner at a restaurant at least once per week.

Each summer, she travelled to Farmville, Virginia for the first Saturday in August to attend the Turn Out and that Sunday’s Homecoming church service. Here she fellowshipped, danced, sang and conversed with hundreds of cousins and family friends. This was her annual vacation, and she took her husband and her kids every year. On the drive down, she told stories of this same ride as a child, hating to spend summers in “the country with no plumbing,” sleeping on beds of straw, being ever fearful of farm animals, and hearing her mom say, “Tarry, take the kids through the tunnel.” More recently, she raved of her bucket list trip to Disney World in 2017.

Brenda’s loving personality demanded friendships everywhere she went. In her various jobs in factories, she was highly respected for her love of God and ability to make everyone around her felt good. Her neighborhood friends adored her refreshing conversations. Her elderly friends appreciated her comforting visits. And even her children’s friends enjoyed her advice and guidance, affectionately calling her Ma, Mama Brenda, B-Money and BR.

Here to reminisce fond memories, happy times, and cherished lessons and morals, she leaves behind: one who calls her wife, Calvin; three who call her mom, Michael, Crystal and Calvin; two who call her Grandma, Patterson and Briana; four who call her sister, Betty, Eugene, Amos and Delphine; one who calls her best friend, Angela; two who call her niece, Aunt Agnes and Aunt Emma; many in-laws, nieces, nephews, and cousins; and even more friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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