Bettie Jean Bobo-Bolden was born on June 16, 1943 to Myrtle Louise and Ellis Lee Bobo in Helena, Arkansas. She was the second child to be born. Shortly after her birth, her aunt Stella and uncle Joe had her baptized.
Bettie Jean’s early years were spent in Arkansas and Oklahoma. In Oklahoma, she spent most of her time with her older sister Rose Mary. Rose Mary had polio and at the age of seven passed away. During those years Bettie Jean learned not to allow people to speak wrongly about her sister, she was Rose Mary’s protector.
Bettie Jean’s mother enrolled her in Elizabeth Miller grade-high school in Helena. She had a disagreement with a teacher there. This was an opportunity for this teacher to see that Bettie Jean was nobody's fool. Later Bettie Jean attended Franklin Private School, where she broke her arm, without any school officials being aware.
In September 1958 Bettie Jean came to San Diego, CA and on August 1959 her first son Freeman Ray was born. Then in March of 1962 her second son Robert Ellis was born. She married Plez III on
March 21, 1966 and was blessed again with Plez IV, her third son.
Bettie Jean was a loyal member of the Elks Nautilus Temple #436, doing community activities with her fellow Elk members, which was the highlight of her week. She received many awards within the Elks community for a vast array of duties. In 2000 her sons started a family tradition, which is an annual picnic held at Shelter Island on the Fourth of July. Bettie Jean never missed an opportunity to be with her family and friends during this time.
Bettie Jean had a mighty hand in raising her grandchildren and her great-grandchildren to a point that a lasting foundation was set within each of them. From passing down family recipes, sharing advice for life and success on being a better friend daily. Bettie Jean was always straight forward and never walked in uncertainty, but in confidence wherever or with whoever she met.
Bettie Jean was preceded in death by husband, who passed away in June of 1997 of lung cancer; parents; stepfather Robert Buck; sister Rose Mary; niece Vanessa; and great-granddaughter Zhonyae.
Left to mourn Bettie Jean are three sons Ray (Rene), Robert (Mary) and Plez IV; daughter Brenda (Billy, Sr.); step-daughters Plezetta and Moniqua; step-son Andre; brother Brady and wife Dee; nieces LaToya, Brandi, Beverly; nephew David; grandchildren Shaunte, Robert II, Ray II, Nathaniel, Chareese, Nickolas, Plez V, I’Riyah, I’Yonna, I’Lyah, Imry, Billy, Jr., Brandon, Daniel, Shannon, Michael, and Layla; great-grandchildren Rayneasha, Angelo, Robert III, Jeremy, Bailey, Donovan, Shemar, Zacaree, Zahcion, and Sofia; and goddaughter Tia. And life long friends Shirley Turner, Shirley Woods, Ida Johnson, Evelyn Porter, Frances Ransoum and Barbara Watkins.
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