School 31
Official Obituary of

Ms. Valildra Ann Williams Berry

August 10, 1952 ~ March 15, 2024 (age 71) 71 Years Old
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Ms. Valildra Ann Williams Berry Obituary

"My Mission In Life Is Not Merely To Survive, But To Thrive And To Do So With Some Passion, Some Compassion, Some Humor, And Some Style" - Maya Angelou

"To know God, trust God and, leave the consequences to Him, Remember your happiest moments and keep them close to you always. Remember to smile." - Valildra Ann Williams Berry

SUMMERVILLE, SC. - The Management and Staff of The Serenity Mortuary, LLC., alongside the Williams, Desaussure and Berry Families announce the passing of Ms. Valildra Ann Williams Berry, 71 of Summerville, SC., who entered into the Master's Joy on Friday afternoon, March 15, 2024 at Trident Medical Center, North Charleston, SC. Ms. Berry is a retired educator with Dorchester County School District 2 and the beloved mother of Ms. Oveta D. Brown and Mr. Brandon L. Desaussure.

Valildra Ann (Lildra) Williams Berry was born August 10, 1952 in Ridgeville, South Carolina to the late Mary Ann (Doodie) Williams Felder and the late Thomas James (TJ) Felder. She was the oldest of three siblings and took on the role of a natural leader. Valildra was a beloved mother and educator whose passion for learning and nurturing young minds left an indelible mark on all who had the privilege of knowing her.She was a high achieving scholar and loved attending school. So much so that she attended school early and graduated from Jenkins Hill High, class of 1969.

Valildra was an active member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, where she found sisterhood, community, and a shared commitment to service. She attended college early and boasted of Claflin College which is now Claflin University and how it cultivated her intellect, leadership skills, and lifelong friendships. Her dedication to education continued at The Citadel, where she earned her master's degree, furthering her knowledge and expertise in her field. Valildra was a graduate of Claflin University (1973) and The Citadel (1990). She was named 1996 Teacher of the Year at Oakbrook Middle School and retired from Dorchester School District #2, Summerville, SC. Valildra also taught  for Dorchester School District # 4 and Orangeburg School Districts. Her career spanned over 34 years as an English/language arts (Gifted & Talented) teacher.

Being the daughter of God fearing parents; Valildra spent a lot of time in church as a child. She was extremely active and throughout her life held many positions at the church; including Christian Education Bible School Director for The Christian Church and Disciples of Christ in South Carolina.

Validra’s long and distinguished career as an educator and church servant, gave her a format to teach Christian values and share God’s word to many. Some of these values were embedded in by her grandparents, “Mama and Papa”. If you knew “Lildra” you’d know that she loved her village. Campbell Thickett and her family were intricate to who she was.

Valildra served her community as a member of four Masonic lodges: Order of the Eastern Star, Order of the Golden Circle, Heroines of Jericho, and Daughter of Isis. She was a Charter member of the Summerville Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and she earned Golden Life status.

She received many awards including the South Carolina Teaching Certificate #93500, 2007 EIA Grant Recipient at Oakbrook Middle School, Charleston Foundation Grant Recipient at Zion Pilgrim Christian Church, Disciples of Christ, Ridgeville, SC and 1996 Disciple of the Year/Regional Church, Disciples of Christ in South Carolina. Even with all of these accomplishments,  her greatest award has been God’s love and mercy. Working for Him was priceless.

Valildra loved reading and gardening (herbs, roses and a veggie garden) but her passion was traveling. She traveled the United States, exploring diverse cultures and her adventures extended overseas. She was able to fulfill a lifelong dream of traveling to Greece. As an educator, Valildra's love for teaching Greek Mythology fueled her desire to experience the rich history and mythology firsthand. Yet, her words rang through in sincerity “No matter how far I roam, there's no place like home" which was a sentiment she often shared upon returning from her adventures.

Beyond her educational, professional and spiritual endeavors, Valildra found joy in life's simple pleasures. Everyone knew Valildra for her public speaking and people skills. She was an avid fan of the Dallas Cowboys and she loved swimming and watching Gunsmoke on television. Valildra cherished moments spent surrounded by loved ones during family gatherings. Her grandchildren held a special place in her heart. She loved laughing, spending quality time and making lasting memories with each of them.

Her philosophy is to know God, trust God and leave the consequences to Him. Remember your happiest moments and keep them close to you always. Remember to smile.

Valildra's legacy of love, laughter, and faith will forever live on in the hearts of those she touched. Her memory will be cherished by her family, friends, and all who were fortunate enough to know her.

Valildra will live on in our hearts and her life will be rejoiced through her son Brandon Leon Desaussure, Summerville, SC, daughter Oveta Desaussure Brown, Ridgeville, SC, her grandchildren, Marlon A. Bowers, Jr., De’Ondre Leon Smith, Summerville, SC, Jaylen Xavier Abney, Ladson, SC, Olivia Jinaye Desaussure and Abigail Rinaye Desaussure, both of Summerville, SC.

Her siblings, Frederick Williams (Julie), Summerville, SC and Tamika Felder Campbell (Juan) Brandywine, MD.

Her nieces and nephews, Tywina Snipes, Ridgeville, SC, Shanine Williams, Ladson, SC, Frederycka Graham, San Antonio, TX, Linyah Morton (Sylvester), Summerville, SC, Zakiya Roberson, Springfield,VA, Chayton Campbell, Brandywine, MD, Cheyenne Williams and Tyree Patton, both of Summerville, SC.

Her special cousins who were more like siblings Theresa Felder Beddard, Givhans, SC and Mark and Ivan (Rachel) Minnis, Leavenworth, KS.

Aunts Anna Jean Varner and Charlotte Bolden, Ridgeville, SC, Mae Pearl Williams, Summerville, SC and Uncle Clarence Felder, Leavenworth, KS.

Her godchildren, Clifton Varner, Goose Creek, SC and  Dawn Boren, Summerville, SC.

And a host of relatives, friends and former colleagues.

***Services of Love for Ms. Valildra Ann Williams Berry are under the direction of The Serenity Mortuary, LLC, of Summerville, SC., we ask that you please keep her family in your thoughts and prayers.***

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March 20, 2024

5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Zion Pilgrim Christian Church (DOC)
168 Campbell Thickett Road
Ridgeville, SC 29472

Delta Sigma Theta Omega Omega Service
March 20, 2024

6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Zion Pilgrim Christian Church (DOC)
168 Campbell Thickett Road
Ridgeville, SC 29472

Celebration of Life
March 21, 2024

11:00 AM
Zion Pilgrim Christian Church (DOC)
168 Campbell Thickett Road
Ridgeville, SC 29472


Zion Pilgrim Christian Church Cemetery
168 Campbell Thicket Road
Ridgeville, SC 29472


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