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Laurelton remembers community service champion

Mother Rocelious Brittian Shackelford, president of the Marie Shackelford-Bailey Achievement Awards Funds Inc., died Aug. 3 at her home in Laurelton. She was 82.

She was many things to many people, but to those who knew her, she was a source of inspiration. Over the years, she managed to significantly touch the lives of both children and adults. A beacon of light, she will always be remembered and kept alive.

Mother Shackelford was born in Georgia where she established a laundry business which provided a well-received community service Based upon customers’ ability to pay, she would charge a small fee or no fee at all. In no time, she had more paying customers than she could accommodate.

This entrepreneurial spirit continued throughout her life. Even at the age of 82, she served as president of the Marie Shackelford-Bailey Achievement Awards Funds Inc., a nonprofit organization founded by her daughter Marie, whose mission is “To Recognize the Overall Achievement of our Youths.”

Following Marie’s untimely death in 1992, Mother Shackelford, determined to keep the mission alive, began to singlehandedly spearhead fund-raising drives as well as manage the Marie Shackelford Bailey Achievement Awards Fund Inc Thrift Shop.

Awards in the form of savings bonds, trophies, medals and certificates were purchased with the funds raised and presented to deserving youths. Such recognition and presentations have made a remarkable difference in the young recipients’ lives.

She served as vice president of Shack’s Private Car and Limousine Service, Inc., an organization established by her son Harold to provide a quality transportation service to the community.

The funeral service was held on Saturday, Aug. 11, at St. Luke Baptist Church in Laurelton, where Dr. Roy L. Gilmore Sr. officiated.

The eulogy was delivered by Mother Shackelford’s pastor, Elder Parish King of The New Gethsemane Soul Saving Station in Rosedale. This angelic service was well attended by family and friends. Interment followed at Pinelawn Memorial Park, Farmingdale, L.I.

Mother Shackelford’s husband, Jack Shackelford, died in 1990 after 56 years of marriage. She is survived by one son, Harold; three daughters — Hettie Shackelford Warren, Doris Shackelford McLeod, Frances Shackelford Howell; grandchildren Edith, Gregory, Deborah Lynn, Beverly, Jeffrey, Jerome, Jimmy, Jason, Lavin, Yolanda, Lever; and a host of great grandchildren and other relatives.

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