obituary header
Welcome to the memorial page for

Mary Lee (Jones) Townsend

February 16, 1941 ~ January 11, 2018 (age 76)


February 16, 1941 - January 11, 2018

Mary Lee Townsend, of Charlotte, NC made her transition from this life to the next on January 11, 2018. She was born in Memphis, Tennessee on February 16th, 1941. Mary graduated high school from Crane Evening School, and later in life obtained her Certified Nurse’s Aide certificate. On March 28, 1960, Mary married Wardell Townsend, who would be her lifelong soul mate and partner. Through this union came six children, Dino Bernard (deceased), Kinney Lavell, Shirley, Katrina Denise (deceased), Colette Renée and Wardell Cortez. They loved children so much, they legally adopted Jason, Latoya and Joseph, and raised Lewis Ray and Lawanda Pressley.  Mary was a devoted mother and community activist and entrepreneur.  Mary and Wardell owned several clothing and grocery stores in Chicago, and gave many opportunities, they would not otherwise have had.   

In the early 1970’s Mary followed Wardell to the Bethlehem Healing Temple at 12 So. Oakley in Chicago where she was baptized in the water and received the infilling of the Holy Ghost.  She was faithful at Bethlehem as, and was ordained an Evangelist by the Late Bishop Chas E. Poole, and served faithfully in Bethlehem and Living Witness of the Apostolic Faith organization until going to Emanuel Healing Temple and worked faithfully there as well. In 1996, now Pastor Mary L. Townsend, conducted her first service in her home, and later purchased a church on Chicago Avenue and remained there for over 30 years where she fed and clothed the community while preaching the gospel nearly every Sunday until retiring to Charlotte, NC with her children.

She is survived by her loving husband of 58 years, Wardell Townsend, Sr.; her children, Kinney Lavelle (Mildred) of Pineville, LA; Colette Renée (Roosevelt, Jr.) of Charlotte, NC, Wardell Cortez (Keisha) of Charlotte, NC; Jason of Natchez, MS; Latoya and Joseph both of Jacksonville, FLA; 23 grandchildren,  24 great- grandchildren and 1great grandchild. 

The family wishes to thank all friends and request in lieu of flowers donations be made in her name to the Angel House Maternity Home of Charlotte or the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

Visitation will be held at Boston’s Mortuary, 4300 Statesville Road, Charlotte N.C; 6-8 pm.  Homegoming Services will be held at Greater Bethlehem Healing Temple, 12 South Oakley Blvd., Chicago, Illinois at 9:30 am.  Interment at Mt. Hope Cemetery, Chicago, Illinois . 

 Service Information

January 15, 2018

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Boston's Mortuary Chapel
4300 Statesville Road
Charlotte, NC 28269

© 2018 Boston's Mortuary. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS