Evangelist Odessa Lee Fletcher “Miss Odessa”, 83, of Lower Burrell, Pennsylvania passed away peacefully on January 15, 2021. She was born on February 7, 1937 in Brackenridge, Pennsylvania to the late William and Bessie Kendall Brooks. Odessa was the 6th of 10 children. In April of 1952 she married Henry S. Hughes of Shepherdstown, West Virginia. To this union were born two daughters and a son. Twenty years later in February of 1972, Odessa married the love of her life, Eddie Fletcher. Together they raised a family of eight children and traveled the world to places like Germany, Paris and London.
Odessa was a strong and industrious woman. At the tender age of 10, her mother’s untimely death set the stage for her and her siblings to take on more responsibilities in the home. Her father was a man of valor who raised his children to be independent and family oriented. Her hard-working attitude and devotion to family forged the path for success in her future careers.
Following her education at Har-Brack High School in Natrona Heights, Pennsylvania, Odessa enrolled in State College of Beauty in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. After obtaining her Associates Degree in cosmetology, she pursued her teaching license as a cosmetology instructor. While attending cosmetology school Odessa worked as Manager of the jewelry department at Tops Department store in Bloomfield, Michigan. Odessa became an entrepreneur by opening her own business “Shermane’s Beauty Land” in the basement of her home. She was well respected by family, friends, and members of the community who entrusted her with the privilege of styling their hair. For approximately 25 years Odessa also worked as a manager for Comcast, a position that she enjoyed and enabled her to utilize her prominent leadership skills.
Odessa was a member of Prospect Missionary Baptist Church while she lived in Pontiac, Michigan. She enjoyed accompanying the congregation in song by playing the piano. All those who knew her know how much she loved to sing and play. She never hesitated to give God the glory when displaying her fine talents.
Odessa was a very loving and hospitable woman who enjoyed cooking and sharing a meal with whomever walked through her door. She also loved to maintain her flower gardens with a variety of figurines, silk floral arrangements and other outdoor keepsakes. Her yard was always well manicured, ready to welcome family and friends at any time. After the death of her husband, Eddie Fletcher, in 2012 she moved to Arnold, Pennsylvania to be closer to her daughter and family.
She is survived by her daughter, Shermane (Anthony) Griffin of West Seneca, New York; four grandchildren; Ma’Lisa (Dion) Stevens, Patricia (Charles) McHenry, Toni Griffin and Karyonda (Ted) Vance; six great grandchildren; Isaiah T. (Destinee) Griffin, Dessarai Griffin, Ebonie Thompson, Alaena Griffin, Charles “CJ” McHenry Jr., Dion “DJ” Stevens Jr., two great-great grandchildren Isaiah “TJ” Griffin Jr. and Isabella “Bella” Griffin, five step children, Eddie Dennis, Elaine, Marshall, and Bruce Fletcher and Verleen (Bill) Green.
She is also survived by her sister, Shirley Houser of Arnold and Rosetta (Walter) Bush of Pontiac, Michigan; sister-in-law Mattie Brooks of New Kensington; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends who love her dearly.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her daughter, Melissa Arnae Hughes; son, Henry S. Hughes Jr.; great grandson, Anthony Joseph McHenry; her beloved husband of 40 years, Eddie Fletcher; her sisters, Elizabeth Allen, Betty Duffey and Gloria Johnson; her brothers, Henry, William Jr., Robert Sr. and Paul Brooks; and two stepchildren Deborah and Shaddad Fletcher.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions a private service was held at Ross G. Walker Funeral Home Ltd., 217 Freeport Road, New Kensington, Pennsylvania. A memorial service will be planned at a later date to honor her memory.
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