June 15, 1922 – July 14, 2023
On Friday, July 14, 2023, God called home his faithful servant and precious jewel, Ms. Gertrude Harvell “Aunt Gert” Clarke at the age of 101; she passed peacefully at her home in Prince George, Virginia. Gertrude was born on June 15, 1922, in Prince George, Virginia to the late Frank J. Harvell and late Mary Hill Harvell. Gertrude was reared in Prince George with five other siblings. She was number 4 out of six siblings. Gertrude graduated from the Disputanta Training (High) School in 1941. Then she attended St. Paul College (a Politician Institute) to earn her Sciences for 1 year. She graduated from Nursing at St. Phillip School of Nursing Medical College in Richmond, Virginia in 1946 and took her State Boards. She worked several years as an operating room technician, teaching and then assigned to teaching staff. Then she went back to school full time in her forties in 1968 to earn her Bachelor and Master of Science Degree in Nursing at Adelphi University in Garden City, New York.
In 1964, Gertrude was swept off her feet and married the late Vincent Clarke. Although she did not have any children of her own, she has served as Mother, Mentor and Aunt to many.
Gertrude served and worked as a registered Nurse for over 31 years in New York and during that time was a Clinical Instructor at Long Island University Health & Hospital Corporation. She took early retirement at 55 and came back to Virginia and taught in the Petersburg General Hospital. Although in retirement she continued to work part-time at the Virginia Department of Health in the Cardiovascular Program and headed up and lead those efforts in the local churches.
She had dual membership at the Zion Baptist Church and Providence Baptist Church where she served on multiple ministries; and for many years she served as the Sunday School Teacher.
Gertrude was preceded in death by her father, Frank J. Harvell and mother, Mary Hill Harvell; sisters Carrie Harvell-Parham and Annie R. Harvell Truly-Logan, brothers William Harvell, Frank Harvell and James Harvell; nephews Charles Parham, Jr, Jerome Parham and Mollivell Parham.
Gertrude was our Matriarch and she left to cherish her memory and is survived by: her nephews, Steve R. Truly (Angela), Willie Al Logan; niece, Debbie Harvell Baugh; faithful cousin, Robert Whitfield, and loving great-niece, Leticia Carter-Prise (James) and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and her devoted sister-friend in Christ, Gloria Washington.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 12 Noon, Friday, July 21, 2023 at Zion Baptist Church, 225 Byrne Street, Petersburg. Rev. Dr. Andrew J. White, Sr., eulogizing and Rev. Michael E. Shannon, Sr., officiating. Interment will follow in Dinwiddie Memorial Park, Dinwiddie. Visitation will be held from 10am-7pm, Thursday, July 20, 2023 at the chapel of Bland Funeral Home, 137 Harrison Street, Petersburg, and also 11am, Friday, July 21st at the Zion Baptist Church prior to the service.
Services have been entrusted to the caring professionals at Bland Funeral Home, 137 Harrison Street, Petersburg. For more information, please call us at (804) 732-7841.