Obituary of Valeria Kelly Dorsey
On Sunday, July 29, 2018, at Riverview Estates, Riverton, NJ, our beloved mother Valeria Germaine Kelly Dorsey transitioned peacefully with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Valeria Kelly Dorsey was born on August 2, 1928 in Trenton NJ, to the late Frederick, Sr. and Ada Kelly. She attended public schools in Bordentown, NJ, Yeadon, PA, and Palmyra, NJ. After graduation from Palmyra High School, she entered Wilberforce University in Ohio (formerly Central State College affiliated with the AME Church) where she majored in dietetics and nutrition. While there she joined Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. and earned a BS degree. After graduating from Wilberforce she was offered a long-term teacher-substitute position in Camden, NJ. This motivated her to pursue additional studies at Trenton and Glassboro State Colleges and Temple University for certification in elementary school education. Mom taught for 39 years, most of those years in the Cinnaminson, NJ school district. She impacted thousands of lives not only by her teaching, but also by her loving and caring nature.
On June 23, 1951 she married the love of her life, Alfred S. Dorsey Sr. In 2001, they were blessed to celebrate 50 years of marriage, before Alfred went home to glory in January of 2002. From this union came their two sons, Alfred Sylvester Jr. and Reginald Stuart. Alfred and Valeria truly enjoyed family and their lives. Traveling was one of their special joys as they visited almost every continent of the world, did multiple cruises and visited more than 40 of the United States. She loved playing games like scrabble, UNO and “Ain’t It A Shame”. She loved sports, especially the Phillies and Eagles. She loved cooking; her rolls and chitterlings were a neighborhood and family hit. Valeria also loved her hats, shoes, gardening and the beauty of a butterfly’s transformation. But mostly she loved people, relationships and enjoying others.
As the daughter of an AME minister and a school teacher, her life was one of literary, cultural and spiritual encouragement. For more than forty years she was a faithful member of Mt. Zion AME Church, Riverton, NJ; coming up through the Sunday School as a student and then a teacher and singing in the Chancellor Choir. She became a first lady when The Reverend Alfred S. Dorsey, Sr. was assigned to pastor Mt. Zion AME Church in Kresson, NJ where they served for 6 years. They were then assigned to Campbell AME Church in Woodbury where they served for 24 years. As first lady, Valeria served as a Sunday School teacher, Vacation Bible School Director, Christian Education Director, President of District Minister’s Wives and Spouses, Advisor to the Missionaries on the local and state levels and leadership in the International Minister’s Wives Association. Two ministries that were very near and dear to her heart were mission work to children in Haiti and the Young Adult Ministry at Campbell AME Church.
Affectionately known as “Pic” or “Picky” to many, Mom lived life to the fullest seeking to enjoy all that God had available for her to do. God blessed her with an infectious smile that lit up every room she entered and endeared her to everyone that experienced it. She used that gift right up to the very end of her life. Valeria cared about others and wanted everyone to have a growing and personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. This truly was her passion in life.
Among the many to mourn her passing are her sons: Dr. Alfred Sylvester, Jr., of Bentonville, AR, Reginald Stuart and his wife Gwendolyn of Lawrenceville, NJ, three spiritual daughters, Roslyn Evans Hall, Roxanne Evans and Cynthia Brown; her sister-in-law; Ella Mae Kelly of Edgewater Park, NJ, and a foster brother-in-law Albert Brown. There are also many nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and her church families from Mt. Zion Riverton, Mt. Zion Kresson and Campbell AME Church and a number extended family members that she adopted.
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