|Birth: ||Jan. 21, 1924|
|Death: ||Apr. 21, 2013|
Bernice Maiflorence Tuggle Braxton, 89, of Salina, died Sunday, April 21, 2013. She was born January 21, 1924 in Memphis, Tennessee, the daughter of Haywood and Ethel China (Brown) Tuggle. Bernice grew up in the city of Germantown, Tennessee.
Bernice attended primary school and middle school in Memphis, TN. She graduated from Booker T. Washington High School where she met her high school sweetheart, Maceo Braxton (Sr.). Bernice was the hall monitor at Booker T. Washington and whenever Maceo was late to school she would always give him a hall pass and never turned him in to the office!
Mrs. Braxton received her Bachelor's Degree in Biology at Philander Smith College and received her Master's Degree in Library Science at the University of Michigan. During World War II she worked at the then Tuskegee Institute (now Tuskegee University) Airfield supplying the Tuskegee Airmen with their parachutes and flight gear. She also worked part time at the library at Tuskegee where she would often help George Washington Carver locate his research material.
Bernice landed a job at Howard University College of Medicine, in Washington, D.C., as a medical school librarian. On her first day in Washington, Bernice serendipitously ran into her high school sweetheart, Maceo, at the bus stop! Maceo was attending medical school at Howard.
Bernice and Maceo were married in 1949 and had five children. They raised their children in Los Angeles, California where Maceo (Sr.) completed his Residency in Radiology at the University of Southern California.
Mrs. Braxton was hired as the second African-American Reference Librarian at the University of Southern California. Bernice was also an accomplished businesswoman and was active in politics as well, often working with the Registrar of Voters. She served as a neighborhood chairwoman for the Democratic Party. Always a champion of the poor and disadvantaged, she was also a leader of the African-American art movement in the Los Angeles community. In addition to promoting and displaying works of budding young artists of color at parties given in her home and other venues, Mrs. Braxton served on the organizing committee of the Los Angeles County African-American Museum of Art.
Dr. and Mrs. Braxton remained in Southern California for over fifty years. They had been married for fifty-two years when Maceo, Sr. passed in 1997. In 1999 Bernice moved to Salina, Kansas to live closer to her children Pamela and Maceo, Jr., and a host of grandchildren. Mrs. Braxton lived out her remaining years in Salina, residing the majority of the time at Eaglecrest Retirement Community where she was always treated with dignity and love.
Our beloved Bernice was a humble soul and faithful servant of Jesus Christ. Always did she treat everyone with love, respect, and courtesy. Bernice will be remembered for her unwavering love and dedication to her family and friends. We will not forget her favorite sayings, "God Bless America!" and "Don't forget to study in the library!"
Bernice was preceded in death by her husband of 52 years, Maceo Braxton, Sr., M.D., in 1997, her son Maceo Braxton, Jr., M.D. in 2008, three brothers, and one sister.
She is survived by four children, Denise Anduze of Hollywood, CA, Sylvia Braxton of Washington, D.C., Pamela Braxton Davis, M.D. and husband Trent W. Davis, M.D. of Salina, KS, and John H. Braxton, M.D. of Marshfield, WI; two daughters-in-law, Shirley Braxton of Upper Marlboro, MD and Debbie Braxton of Cape Elizabeth, ME; a brother, Alan Quinn Tuggle, M.D. of San Bernardino, CA; eleven grandchildren, Natalie, Maceo III, Trent II, Charles, Andrew, Brooke, Aaron, Montana, Sierra, Savannah, and Keesha; and one great-grandchild, Jessimia.
Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, April 26, at Ryan Mortuary, 137 N. Eighth, where the family will receive friends from 6 to 7 p.m.. Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at St. John's Lutheran Church, 302 S. Seventh, with the Rev. Ed Foster officiating. Burial will be in Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside, CA on Monday, April 29.
Memorials are suggested to St. John's Lutheran Church, Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum, and the Friends of the Salina Public Library.
Maceo Braxton (1922 - 1997)
Maceo Braxton (1953 - 2008)*
Riverside National Cemetery
Plot: 56A, 0, 389
Created by: Mayflower Pilgrim 332
Record added: Apr 30, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 109736961