Mrs. Rosa M. Rawls was born April 20, 1932 in Vidalia, Tooms County, GA, to the late Rev. Harvey and Vergie Bell McLeod, she was the seventh child of seven children. At an early age she became a Christian and joined the First African Baptist Church in Vidalia, GA. Rosa graduated high school in Vidalia. In 1951 she was united in holy matrimony to Mr. Charlie Rawls in Miami, FL and to this union four children were born. She and her husband and their first-born child relocated to Rochester, New York and joined the Mt. Vernon Missionary Baptist Church in 1954 under the leadership of Rev. Robert E. Warfield. Rosa was very dedicated to her church where she served faithfully on the Nurses Guild and the Senior Ministry, a ministry where she and her fellow sisters made clothing for underprivileged children in Haiti. She loved her church and serving the Lord in any way that she could.
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In 1967 Rosa was employed by Xerox Corporation where she worked in the Manufacturing Division until her retirement in 1995. In 1973 Rosa graduated from the Rochester Urban Center School of Practical Nursing of the State University of New York (SUNY) of which she was very proud. Rosa was also a proud member of the Improved Benevolent of the Protective Order of the Elks of the World. Her Temple was Eldorado Temple #32 which she joined in 1953 and served in the stations including Daughter Ruler, member of Radio Council of Western NY and Toronto, CA. She received Past State Honors in the New York State Daughter’s of Elks where she held many offices and positions including Daughter State President for nine years. She continues to hold the position of Daughter State President Emeritus at the time of her passing. Rosa became a member of Masonic, Free Masonry Ezra #122 in Rochester, NY on June 6, 1981. She received her Past Grand Daughter honor on August 9, 1981, in Chicago IL.
Rosa loved her flowers and plants and she was a vivid gardener; she had the “greenest” thumb. The Lord truly gave her the gift of gardening.
Predeceased by all of her brothers and sisters, Mrs. Rosa M. Rawls entered into eternal rest on Sunday, September 8, 2019 in Rochester, New York. She leaves to cherish her memories, two daughters: Hilda (Danny) Hopkins, Donna F. (Arnold) Bush, two sons: Ronald Rawls and Virgil (Marcie) Rawls. Grandchildren: Brooke, Brandon, Dawn-Chamane, Sheronda, Tiana, Maurice, Rachel, Christopher, Virgil T. and Andre, nine great grandchildren, a special friend, Mrs. Johnnie Powell and a host of other relatives, church family and many friends.
Friends may call Thursday, September 19, 2019 from 10AM - 12Noon with services immediately following at Mt. Vernon Baptist Church 351 Joseph Avenue. Interment Riverside cemetery