Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club announces scholarship recipients

Published 6:11 pm Saturday, July 14, 2018

The Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club has a long history of giving back to the community and as the club celebrated its 43rd anniversary this past week, they also awarded nearly $7,000 to local high school students.

“This is the highlight of our annual event,” Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club president Willie Glasper said.

Through the years, the Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club has awarded thousands of dollars to students, Glasper said, and those who have contributed annually, include the club’s three chapters, the Chicago Metropolitan Area Chapter, the Greater Los Angeles Area Chapter and the Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club Las Vegas Chapter. Also contributing to this fund is the Strait-way Church of Los Angeles, Calif., Edward and Ernestine Williams of August, Ga.; James Dillard of Chicago, Ill.; James and Josephine Wallace of Los Angeles, Calif. and T.P. Williams, Gertrude Anderson Young, Albert Young, Shirley Coleman Harris, Louis Smith and St. Mary’s Catholic Church, all of Vicksburg.

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Booker T. Wilson and Richard Dorsey, founded the Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club. Both men were Vicksburg residents who had moved away, and were living in Washington D.C. and Atlanta, Ga., respectively. On a return visit to their hometown, the men decided it would be nice to hold a reunion each year for those returning to Vicksburg for a visit.

Initially, Wilson met with some local residents, Glasper said, who also thought this would be a good idea, and in 1975, the Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club was born.

In addition to the scholarship dollars awarded to local students annually, the Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club also aids fire victims and those needing assistance with burials, utility payments, medical needs and rent. To date, Glasper said, more than $100,000 has been contributed to help those in need and the club’s three chapters provide the funds.

The Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club is open to anyone interested in joining, Glasper said, and during the four-day event, activities include the presentation of the scholarships, a golf tournament, a wine and cheese hour, a banquet and a farewell worship service.

This year, 15 Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club scholarships were awarded. Seven of the students graduated from Warren Central High School and eight were graduates of Vicksburg High School.


Scholarships awarded:

• Booker T. Wilson Memorial Scholarship — Quentrell Sturgis, $500

• James and Gayelord Carpenter Scholarship — Gabriel Bowman, $500

• Hattie Knox Memorial Scholarship — Myka Scott, $500

• St. Mary’s Catholic Church Scholarship — Arionna Hill, $500

• Eugene and Jessie Lee Stevens Memorial Scholarship — DeKoree Freeman, $500

• Markeda Mims Memorial Scholarship — Anfernee Funches, $500

• Panola and Tommy Lee Rivers and John Reynolds, Sr. Memorial Book Scholarship — Hope Lee, $300

• Percy Strothers Foundation Memorial Book Scholarship — Shamar Dorsey, $300

• Gloria Jean Robinson-Rankin Memorial Book Scholarship — Markia Anderson, $300

• Delores Thomas Bullock Scholarship — Garland Robinson, $500

• Harry Powell Memorial Scholarship — Rekea’ Williams, $500

• Leroy and Jessie Terrell Memorial Scholarship — Ashley Erves, $500

• Edward and Ernestine Williams Scholarship — Danielle Phelps, $500

• Mozella Flaggs Memorial Scholarship — Nicholas Anderson, $500

• Theresa P. Williams Memorial Scholarship — Kamira Carter, $500

Awards were also given to students who participated in the Vicksburg Homecoming Benevolent Club’s junior high school essay contest and high school oratorical contest. The objective of these events, Glasper said, is to support leadership qualities. They are also to encourage students to think and speak clearly and intelligently and to inspire a better understanding of “home” and what makes the phrase “Happiness is…. Coming home!”

Those excelling in the junior high school essay contest were Aisha Williams, who was awarded first place and received a $100 gift card and medallion; second place and recipient of a $50 gift card and medallion, Elysse Terrett, and third place and recipient of a $25 gift card and medallion, Destiny Mace. Honorable mention/participants were Sha’Kyria Allen and Ellis Terrett.

The high school oratorical winners were Machia Lumpkin, who was awarded first place and received a $100 gift card and medallion; second place and recipient of a $50 gift card and medallion, Amoiree Kelly, and third place and recipient of a $25 gift card and medallion, Kylah Steadman.

Other awards presented this weekend during the annual event included the 2018 Humanitarian of the Year Award, which was presented to the Rev. Malcolm O’Leary, the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award presented to Louise Stewart and the 2018 Business of the Year Award presented to John Walker, Walker Detail & Minor Repair Shop.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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