Photography

Johnnie Mae Vasser

December 5, 1934 ~ July 22, 2022 (age 87)

Obituary

Johnnie Mae Vasser, born Johnnie Mae Holdman, affectionately known as Senior Most, was born on December 5, 1934, in Glendora, Mississippi. She was the eldest of nine children born to Estelle and John Holdman, both of whom preceded her in death. Johnnie was a bright light from the start, for she had two birthdays. Her mother told her that she was born on the 2nd of December, but all of her official records stated the 5th. Now you know that you are truly blessed and highly favored if you have two birthdays, and so we happily celebrated her on both. Johnnie Mae accepted our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ into her heart and life at a young age. She was a faithful member and servant at her home of worship, Freewill Missionary Baptist Church, for over 60 years. She was an usher for many of those years and was the oldest living member of her beloved church, until God called one of his most devoted children and our matriarch home. Senior Most attended Rosenwald Grammar School, where she was a star student and beloved by all of her teachers. She started paving the way early for her siblings by being a great example of what a phenomenal young woman and student should be. She was intelligent, hardworking, and confident in her abilities. She was admired and respected by her peers, as well as her teachers. Johnnie would then attend Rosenwald Senior High School, where she graduated not only with honors and scholarships, but as the valedictorian of the class of 1952. From there, Senior Most went on to graduate from AM&N of Little Rock, now known as the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. After graduating from college, Johnnie moved to Chicago, Illinois, to start a new and exciting chapter in her life. She landed her first job at Spigel Department Store. With a love and natural ability to sew and make clothing for herself and those she loved; she was a perfect fit for the then exclusive retailer. Soon after, she would start her family. Johnnie was the proud mother of five outstanding children: Rochelle (preceded her in death), Vivian (preceded her in death), Shirl, Willie Jr., and her baby boy Darryl. Knowing that she had to be the sole provider for her children, Johnnie decided to go into the field of nursing. She would go on to become a registered nurse, and the Cook County Hospital would be graced with her presence, knowledge, talent, and exceptional work ethic for over 30 years. Being assertive and steadfast, she was the glue that held the labor and delivery department together. In addition to exceling at work and providing for her family, Johnnie loved to serve the Lord. It was not by chance or coincidence that this Queen would meet her King at church. In September 1975, Mr. Matthew Vasser would have the honor and privilege of having Johnnie Mae as his wife for 42 years. He would love, honor, and cherish her, as well as her children (“You better say that!”) until his passing in 2017. Johnnie Mae loved her siblings dearly, and they would spend as much time as they could, whenever they could, together. Be it at their loving parents home (4513 means everything), church, or at each other’s homes, they cherished their time together. They often traveled together and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. While on their last trip together to Blytheville, Arkansas, Johnnie spread love, shared stories, wisdom, and entered church that Sunday morning singing the Lord’s praises. She lived to serve, she lived in love, she walked, talked, and lead by faith, and “My, my, my,” she loved us so. “Aww yeah!” Johnnie Mae, also known as “Senior Most,” job well done, job well done… Senior Most leaves to cherish her memories loving daughter Shirl(Anderson Jr) Crump, Willie(Beverly) Murray Jr, Darryl(Salome) Murray, bonus daughter Tamara Hart, brother John Holdman Jr, sisters Estella(Curly, preceded in death)Stokes, Dorothy(Andrew Sr., preceded in death) Ivy, Hattie(Alex) Baugh, 16 grandchildren, 23 great grandchildren, 5 great- greatgrandchildren, loving nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. The family would also like to recognize and honor the memories of her parents John and Estella, husband Matthew, her brothers James, Charles, Arthur and Robert, her two beautiful daughters Rochelle and Vivian and two grandchildren Anthony Jr and Jasmine whom all welcomed our newest Saint with open arms as they all preceded her in death. 

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Services

Wake
Saturday
August 6, 2022

10:00 AM
Free Will MB Church
2651 W Roosevelt Road
Chicago, IL 60608

Funeral Service
Saturday
August 6, 2022

11:00 AM
Free Will MB Church
2651 W Roosevelt Road
Chicago, IL 60608

Interment following funeral service
Saturday
August 6, 2022

Washington Memory Gardens
701 Ridge Rd
Homewood, IL 60430

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