Cover photo for Geneva Elizabeth Pope's Obituary
Geneva Elizabeth Pope Profile Photo
1930 Geneva Elizabeth Pope 2024

Geneva Elizabeth Pope

January 19, 1930 — May 4, 2024

Abingdon

Geneva Elizabeth Pope was born in Baltimore, Maryland on January 19, 1930, to Madeline and James Spriggs, Sr. The family resided at 552 Baker Street in Baltimore. In 1944, the Spriggs family moved to The Projects in Edgewood, Maryland. Geneva started her early education at St. Peter Claver School in Baltimore and graduated from Bel Air Colored School in 1947.

In that same year, Geneva met the love of her life, Olie Lee Pope. They were married on July 11, 1948, and began their life together, also residing in The Projects. In 1957, they moved to 3610 B&O Road in Abingdon, a home they built from the ground up. They were married for 56 years until Olie’s passing on September 22, 2004. From that union, they had eight daughters and one son: Geneva, Genevieve, Jr., Wanda, Tessa, Annette, Doreene, Phyllis, and Sonya.

Geneva was a devout Catholic and in the 60’s, the family became the first Black parishioners to join St. Francis Catholic Church.   Geneva was employed by Drago’s Restaurant for 18 years and the Federal Government for 10 years completing many secretarial training courses and Information Security training. She retired in 1982. She also served as a Secretary for National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) Union completing several Management Relations courses.

Geneva loved to bake chocolate cakes, cinnamon rolls, hot rolls, and entertaining family and friends, especially during the holidays. She was always enthusiastic about learning new things. Over the years, she took many fun classes like cake decorating and floral design. She self-published a book of poetry about her love of family and friends. She crocheted countless blankets for her family.  

Geneva loved fashion, her Magnolia tree, and her garden. Some of her favorite things to do were reading, sending holiday cards, playing cards, Chinese checkers and especially playing Pokeno. She and Olie loved to spend summers traveling to his hometown in Franklin, Virginia, camping in the mountains, Sunday afternoons at the beach, long family rides for ice cream, and Friday drive-in movie nights.

Geneva was an integral part of the community. She would make sure that the accomplishments of friends, family, social and civic activities, and events were highlighted in the newspaper.   Articles were submitted to the Aegis, Afro American, Baltimore Sun and countless other periodicals to keep people aware and show recognition when it was well deserved or just a simple human-interest story.  

She was instrumental in getting a resolution from the City of Franklin, Virginia, including the article “Veteran’s Day Remembrance” honoring Olie and three of his brothers, who served in Europe during WWII, returning home safely and two brothers who also served in the military.   

Geneva was also politically and civically motivated. She was an Election Judge, campaign worker and a Notary Public for over 10 years. In 1956 Geneva and Olie sued and won a suit against Harford County asking for integration into the school system allowing their children to be one of the first Black children to attend Edgewood Elementary School, which was a 10-minute walk from their home instead of a 30-minute ride to Central Consolidated School in Hickory, Maryland.

Some of her organization affiliations were Bel Air Colored High School Association, Central Consolidated Alumni & Friends Association, Chairperson of Alumus Queen, Edgewood Project Reunion, Ruff-Ross Educational Fund, Sickle Cell Anemia Walk-a-Thon, and a member of the Brotherhood of Man Gospel Choir.   

She received the following recognitions: 13 Salute Nomination for Outstanding Community Service – Channel 13 (WJZ-TV); Outstanding Achievements - Fairview A.M.E. Church, March 2000; Women Making a Difference, 2000; Certificate of Appreciation, Hosanna Community House, Inc. 2004; Harford County Public Schools Certificate of Recognition – Mary B. Berry Committee.

In honor of Black History Month, she created numerous displays highlighting important local and national events/people, etc. which were displayed throughout Harford County schools, libraries, churches, NAACP meetings and the Aberdeen Proving Ground. Her uncle and his father were the original founders of the Afro American Newspaper founded in 1892.

She met many celebrities over her lifetime. The most famous one was Muhammad Ali, along with Sammy Davis, Jr., Gladys Knight, and some national and local politicians.

Geneva was preceded in death by her beloved husband Olie Lee Pope, Sr., daughters Geneva R. Sconion and Wanda L. Waldon. Geneva was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, and friend.  She leaves behind her cherished children, Genevieve E. Massey, Olie L. Pope, Jr. (Dimitria), Tessa B. Dorsey (Dennis), Annette J. Taylor (Antonet), Doreene B. Watters (George), Phyllis P. Pope, and Sonya Y. Harris, and Richard Attucks (Patricia).  She had 22 grandchildren, 33 great-grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren. She also leaves behind siblings, John Spriggs, Dennis Spriggs, Theresa Jackson, and Anne Jackson, and a host of nieces and nephews.

Special Acknowledgements and thanks to our very special caregivers:  Celeste Smith, Alishia Schofield, Ontranette Thompson, Fannie Jackson, Pamela Demby, Rhonda Buchanan, Catherine Harris, and Angela Melvin.

Special Thanks to her Medical Team:  Dr. Stanley Kman (Primary Care Physician) & Staff, Dr. Joyce Zeno (Cardiologist) & Staff, Dr. Roy Phillips (Endocrinologist) & Staff, the Department of Aging, Sandra Agyapong (Pharmacist) Plumtree Pharmacy, Amedisys (Home Hospice Care) and Bayada.

Words of Thanks

The family would like to extend our sincere thanks and gratitude for all the wonderful cards, phone calls and texts expressing their sympathy for the loss of our beloved mother.   We appreciated all the prayers and kind words for our mom when she was in her final months.   

To send flowers to the family in memory of Geneva Elizabeth Pope, please visit our flower store.

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Friday, May 24, 2024

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