Mrs. Annie Louise Pearson peacefully passed on Friday, February 8, 2019. Funeral services will be Monday, February 18, 2019, 11:00 am at Little Marsh Chapel AME Zion Church, 301 Martin Luther King Street, St. Pauls, NC, Reverend Dr. Otis T. McMillian, Officiating. The family will be receiving family and friends at 205 N. Seawell St., St. Pauls, N.C. 28384.
Mrs. Annie Louise Ray-Pearson, known affectionately as Louise, was born February 2, 1936 to Joseph F. Ray and Annie Lee Robinson Ray in St. Pauls, North Carolina. God in his infinite wisdom called her to eternal rest on February 8, 2019. She was preceded in death by her parent; husband, John Pearson; sisters, Maggie Ray Corney and Harriet Ray; brothers, Larsberry, P.D., Deomy, Garland, John Troy, Jesse, James, Sandy and Charles and Sharon Blalock a niece she reared.
Louise graduated from East Side High School and went on to matriculate at North Carolina Central University where she obtained her Bachelors and Masters degrees. She returned home eagar to begin life as a secretary but God had other plans. She began working for the Public Schools of Robeson County where she worked for over 30 years before retiring the first time. She came out of retirement and returned to work in the Cumberland County School System for a few years before retiring again. Over her 30+ years of teaching, she touched the lives of many students who will forever remember her as stern and tough but loving and fair.
She accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior at an early age and joined Little Marsh Chapel A.M.E. Zion Church in St. Pauls, North Carolina, where she was an active member until her health began to fail. She faithfully did the programs for LMC and other churches throughout the area for many years. She loved her church and served LMC in many capacities such as Class Leader and Director of Acolytes. She was also a member of the Chancellor and Mass Choirs, Maturing Adults Sunday School Class and the Trustee Board.
Later in life, she married the love of her life, John Pearson. They remained happily married until his death.
As a resul of her generous spirit and pleasant, hardworking personality, Louise was loved by many. She was a loyal and devoted member of Las Amigas Inc. and the NAACP as well as the Mary Bethune Chapter of the Eastern Star. Her willingness to serve wherever she saw a need took her to new heights when she successfully ran for the office of St. Pauls Commissioner in 1994 after serving on the Zoning Board for several years. She was in office from June of 1994 until October 2002. When she became a Commissioner in '94, she made history, becoming not only the first African-American to run for and win an office on the town board, she was also the first woman.
Louise leaves to cherish her love, laughs, life and legacy forever to: nieces that she raised as her own, Pamela White (Troy) of Elizabeth City and Tanikka of the home; brother, Curtis Ray; sister Rosie Marsh (Albert Sr.); sister-in-law, Geneva Ray all of St. Pauls, North Carolina; she also leaves behind a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and dear friends who will cherish memories of her forever.