Cover photo for Mrs. Johnnie Ivory Ward's Obituary
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Mrs.

Mrs. Johnnie Ivory Ward

The life and legacy of Mrs. Johnnie Ivory Ward

Mrs. Johnnie Ivory Ward was born February 19, 1930, in Waskom, Texas, to Willis Hill and Suewillia Davis-Hill. The family later moved to Houston, Texas. She was the first-born daughter of the eleven children from that union, born on her father’s birthday. She attended primary school at Our Mother of Mercy Catholic School in Houston Texas, and from then, she went on to attend Nursing School in Colorado where she earned her bachelor’s degree in Nursing. She was a nurse for many years before she retired. She always had a heart to help others. She also worked as a supervisor for Mattel Inc. Johnnie also helped run her husband’s construction company where she did the bookkeeping and payroll for the business. Johnnie was very smart, intelligent, and had many God-given talents. She accepted Christ at an incredibly young age. Later, she met and married Ernest Ward Sr. and they relocated to Los Angeles, California. They were both devout members of Greater New Unity Baptist Church in Los Angeles, California. This was where they raised their four children: Elizabeth Ivory Ward, Charles Ward (Baby Charles), Carolyn Ward, Melvin Eugene Ward. In addition to being highly active in her church, she was a devout member of the Usher Board, the Mothers Board, and the Women’s Auxiliary. She also served as a missionary and philanthropist and community leader. She was always known as a faithful servant of Christ. The Family later moved to Las Vegas, NV where she would begin her second career working for the federal government. She would then later retire from the federal government. After the passing of her dear husband, the family moved to Chandler, AZ. She was led by God to join Gethsemane Lutheran Church where she would serve as a faithful member who was loved by all, and she touched so many with her sweet smile and warm spirit. She enjoyed most the candlelight Christmas Eve program for her entire life. She enjoyed her home visits and communion and prayer visits from Pastor Jerry Kosberg at Gethsemane for so many years – all the way until the end. She was also visited by Pastor Terry Lambert of Cornerstone Christian Fellowship – Chandler for spiritual encouragement. She later joined Cornerstone Christian Fellowship – Chandler, where she enjoyed the fellowship and ministry. She continued to attend and serve at both churches. She was always grateful for prayer because prayer changes things. God and her family were always first. She was a praying woman and a strong woman of faith. She was an honorary board member of Ready Set Go Foundation, where she was the oldest person to complete the program and she was congressionally recognized. She was a community activist and a proud Chandler resident for two decades. She enjoyed feeding people in the whole community. She had a genuine love for people, and she enjoyed giving to all in need. Cooking for her family was a favorite activity, especially when it involved her two granddaughters, Ivory and Iveya. For their entire life, she was always there. Her face always greeted them when they arrived home from school. She was an amazing cook. She enjoyed the fine arts and music. She enjoyed shopping and she loved to travel. She was a fashionista. She was always classy and always elegant. She was an incredible storyteller. She was always so full of life and had so much wisdom to share with others. “Treat others how you want to be treated” were the words she lived by. “Be grateful for the things you have- don’t worry about the things you do not have”. “Worry about nothing and pray about everything”. She always enjoyed her niece, Sonia, who would come to visit for every birthday and every important event. She enjoyed her shopping time with Sonia, her daughter, Elizabeth, and her granddaughters, Ivory, and Iveya. No matter how terrible things got, prayer was always the first thing she did first. Her greatest passions in life were Christ, her daughter, and her granddaughters. The name they called her was Granny, and Granny never missed anything. The love she had- all could see and feel. When she walked into a room, she would light it up. Mrs. Johnnie Ivory Ward left this life to go sit with the Heavenly Father and join her beloved husband and other family and friends. She will always live on forever and will be in our hearts. She always made everyone feel loved. She was a strong, amazing woman – one who will never be forgotten. She always spoke her mind and always spoke from her heart as she spoke life into other people’s lives. She was constantly engaged and always present in her family’s lives. Her grandkids encouraged her, gave her life, and kept her going. She always put Christ first had a big heart that was always showing love. Johnnie was the Matriarch of the family and the oldest living sibling of 11 children. She will be remembered for her love of Christ, her family, and her friends. She was loved by so many and so many will miss her dearly. She was a devoted and dedicated wife, mother, grandmother, and friend. She is survived by and mourned by her beautiful daughter, Elizabeth Ivory Ward, of Chandler, Arizona, a niece who was like a daughter to her, Sonia Johnson, of Westminster CO; two granddaughters, Ivory Amarah Ward of Chandler, Arizona, Iveya Ivory Alayah Ward of Chandler, Arizona; one son in law, Councilman OD Harris of Chandler, Arizona; two brothers, William Charles Hill of Houston, Texas, and Michael Hill of Houston, Texas; one sister, Emery Jean Williams, of Houston, Texas; one sister-in-law, Pamela Sue Hill, and a long host of relatives which include nieces, nephews, and dear friends. She is preceded in death by her beloved and devoted husband Ernest Ward Sr.; Parents, Willis Hill and Suewillia Hill; Children, Charles Ward (Baby Charles), Carolyn Ward, Melvin Eugene Ward; two sisters, Zephyr Lena Asante, Betty Marie Pink, and four brothers: Joseph Hill, Marvin Hill, Calvin Hill, Jackie Ray Hill, Roy Hill.
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