“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give to me at that day; and not to me only, but also to all them that have loved his appearing.” II Timothy 4:7-8 (ASV)
It’s all in a name: Lilly Darlene Coleman, affectionately called “Darlene” which means Darling or Beloved, was and is a true warrior that lived life on her own terms. “Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.” Proverbs 4:23 (ASV)
A Time to be Born: Lilly Darlene was born on May 26, 1950 to Mose and Beulah Mason, who preceded her in death in Detroit, Michigan. Darlene was the nineth of ten children born to this union. Preceding her in death were her siblings: brothers, Henry Rankin and Frank Winfred Mason; and her sisters, Mary Emma Mason, Melva Yvette Sanders, Bernice Tucker, and Christine Ross.
A Time to Grow: Darlene accepted Christ as a young girl at Chapel Hill Missionary Baptist church in Detroit, Michigan under the late Pastor Roy Allen. As Darlene continued to grow and mature in the word, she became a faithful member and servant at the Garden of Faith Missionary Baptist Church, in Detroit, Michigan. She served and fellowshipped for more than 30 years under the pastoral shepherding of Pastor Emeritus Robert L. Bills, Pastor Eddie J. Sain II and Pastor Ricky Reed. Darlene loved her church family and was a dutiful, member of the Pastor’s Aide, Sunday School, and Mission ministries. She taught and attended Vacation Bible School, Bible Study and Prayer Meetings. Yes, she was known to make a joyful noise as a member of the church choir.
A Time to Learn: Darlene was educated in the Detroit Public School system, and graduated class of 1968 from Mackenzie High School.
A Time to Work: Darlene’s professional career started at Art Center Hospital where she worked as a dietician. Darlene had a sincere desire to make a difference, she later transitioned to a career as a Paraprofessional working for Detroit Public Schools at several facilities including; the Leland Orthopedic School, Dieter Trainable Center, and Keidan School. As a paraprofessional, Darlene used her time, her talent, and her resources to be a blessing and enrich the lives of the children she taught. Darlene truly had a heart and passion for learning and was eager to share that with children of all ages. In Darlene’s heart every child was special and she loved them all. Her creative ability to teach arts and crafts, shepherd the children on field trips, as well as attend special events and holiday celebrations with the children brought her great joy and total satisfaction.
In as much as she enjoyed working for the Detroit Public School system, retirement was the next phase of life for Darlene. For her, it was so long, rather than goodbye, to the students and teachers of whom she was truly fond of. In June 2010, her beloved career as a Special Education Paraprofessional in the Center Base Program classroom journey had come to a close. As Darlene passed the torch to others, she and those around her understood that she had left an indelible mark on hundreds of students and their families over the span of several decades. She understood the assignment.
A Time to Cherish: Darlene was a very caring and compassionate woman. Her wisdom and insight were often shared sharply, in truth and love, with everyone she knew. Her fearless outlook on life empowered all those she came in contact with. While she had no natural-born children, she played an important role in shaping and nurturing her nieces, nephews, and foster child. Each of these children held a special place in her heart. There was a special soft spot for her great-niece Kayla, whom she fondly called “Nana’s baby” and her fur baby Lansing Arthur also known as Lani.
A Time to Enjoy: Darlene was an avid fan of the Detroit Tigers; she never missed a game whether in-person or on television. No matter whether they won or lost she always cheered for her hometown boys, a true fantastic fan. Darlene enjoyed working crossword puzzles, playing her electronic games, surfing and posting on Facebook, dancing, listening to music and playing a good game of bid whist.
A chef in her own right, Darlene delighted in cooking, and baking for both family and friends. Everything she made was made with special ingredients and spices, packed full of smiles, love and joy. Her favorite recipe included peanut butter, flour, sugar and quality time with her great-niece, Kayla.
A Time to Say Farewell: Lilly Darlene Coleman made her transition on Tuesday, October 11, 2022, while at Providence Hospital, in Southfield, Michigan. She was a modest woman who never put on airs, and would lend help to those in need by sharing her wisdom, wit, or a meal. Darlene was both a champion and a warrior; as such, her life will be remembered not in material possessions acquired, but in hearts touched, lives changed, and love shared. After fighting a good fight, God welcomed her to eternal rest.
A legacy of love characterizes her life story: her sisters, Valera Jean Wright, Mozelle Campbell, and Lisa Marie Mason; Sister-in-law, Linda Rankin; her loving devoted niece, Danita Lynn Wimbush (served as her caregiver, health care advocate and prayer warrior); and her faithful nephew, Timothy Townsend. Darlene will be missed by many that knew and loved her including: a host of loving nieces, nephews, cousins, the Garden of Faith Church family and friends.
10:30 AM - 11:00 AM