Alma Jo Williams Johnson Hedgemon was born to the union of McKinley Williams, SR and Ruby Jones Williams in Oakdale, Louisiana on April 18, 1934. She was the third child of five children. Alma accepted Christ at an early age and was baptized at the age of 8 years old under the leadership of Rev. J.H. Hankins at the Starlight Baptist Church in Oakdale, Louisiana. She attended Allen Parish Training School from 1st grade to 12th grade in Oakdale, LA. After graduating from High School as Salutatorian of her class. She went onto attend Grambling State University where she pledged Alpha Theta Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She received her Bachelor Degree in Elementary Education with Honors. She received a fellowship to University of New Orleans where she obtained her Master Degree in Elementary Mathematics. She loved to go to school so she continued on to Southern University and A&M College where she received her plus 30.
She was a devoted member at Starlight for 73 years until she married Abner Hedgemon, Jr and relocated to Shreveport, Louisiana, where she united with Goodwill Missionary Baptist Church. She was an active leader within the church and served faithfully. Her activities while being a member at both churches include the following: BYPU, Young Women of Christian Association, Church Secretary for 33 years, Sunday School Attendant and Teacher, Praise Team, Vacation Bible Study Coordinator, Layperson on the United Education Missionary Association, Young Adult Ushers, Junior Women Mission, Mission #2 and Senior Mission Auxiliary, former member of Morning Glory Chapter Number 59 Order of Eastern Stars, True Friend Court Number 7 Heroines of Jericho. These are just a few things she did. She was always willing to help wherever she could do so.
She also was active in her community and community service organizations: former member of the Zeta Lambda Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Alexandria, Louisiana, Allen Parish School Board member for 12 years, Reading for Adult Education, School Based Health Program, The Friends of the Library Board, Allen Action Agency, United Education Missionary Baptist Association serving as Secretary for 6 years, Secretary, Vice President, and President of the Central Louisiana District of Supervisor Association, Treasurer for the Louisiana Schools Association, Louisiana Administrators of Federal Assisted programs serving as Secretary, Treasurer, Vice President, and President for 3 years, Allen High Alumni Association Secretary for 20 plus years, Allen Grambling Alumni serving on different chairs on different occasions, and President of Oakdale Retired Teachers for a number of years.
Alma possessed an incredible passion for enriching the lives of others –especially children. She dedicated her life to promoting the value of education and the advancement of children of the city of Oakdale, the parish of Allen, and the State of Louisiana. She believed that children should get and education in order to better themselves.
Alma began her 40 year teaching career at Carver High School in Kinder, Louisiana, for 14 years. She also taught at Oakdale Elementary School for 3 years before being promoted to the Allen Parish School Board Central Office as a Title 1 Specialist for Mathematics. Later becoming the Co-Director of Title 1 Programs until she retired in 1994.
Always civic minded and community engaged, her regard for community service kept her busy. She exhibited dignity, and professionalism while demonstrating compassion for all she would meet. She loved her siblings and all the members of her family and if you got the chance to converse with her you would always feel like a part of her family/village. Anytime you would call her with something not going just quite right no matter what it was she would always say, “We should thank God that things are as well as they are because it could always be worst.” Somehow, that always seemed to make things a little bit better. She always tried to be positive no matter what the situation or circumstance may be.
Alma was preceded in death by her parents, sisters, Ruth Williams Jackson, Hilda Jean Williams Jones, and Helen Louise Williams Bradley. She leaves fond memories to be cherished by her husband, Abner Hedgemon, Jr. of Shreveport, LA; her daughter, Lavetta Cherise Johnson and her granddaughter, Alexis Cheri Wright both of Arlington, TX; her brother, McKinley Williams, Jr. of Alexandria, LA; her Sister-N-Law Joann Hedgemon, of Tallulah, LA; Marie AnnJonett Hall (Robert) of Augusta, GA, Benjetta Hedgemon of Shreveport, LA; Nancy Hamilton (Tyrone) of Shreveport, LA; Daisy Anderson-King of Shreveport, LA. and a host of other relatives, nieces, and nephews.
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