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Rev. Dr. William E. Russell


Sunrise: March 3, 1940

Sunset: March 4, 2019

Rev. Dr. William E. Russell transitioned to join the love of his life, Angela C. Russell, and three infants who preceded him in death on Monday, March 4, 2019. Left to cherish his memory are his daughters Tonye Russell Epps, J. D., K. Nicole Powell (Whitney), Kiondra Russell, son, Johnny Vo (JoAnne), six grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. He also leaves to cherish his memory a brother, Lloyd Russell, sisters-in-law, nephews, nieces, and a host of family and dear friends.

As a true man of God, he pastored in Delaware and Virginia for more than 54 years until he retired in February 2018 as pastor of New Hope Baptist Church in Suffolk, Virginia. Not only was he a servant leader in the ministry, but also in the community as an educator and activist. In 2013, he retired as the Deputy Superintendent from Chesapeake Public Schools after 49 years in education.

He was active in several organizations including his church, Union Baptist Missionary Church, the Chesapeake Branch of the NAACP, and Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. Rev. Dr. Russell was also the co-founder of the L.D. Britt, M.D. Scholarship Committee. In addition, he was appointed to the Board of Visitors of Old Dominion University in 1997 for a four- year term and was reappointed in 2001, serving a total of eight years.

Viewing Friday, March 15, 2019 Metropolitan Funeral Service 5605 Portsmouth Boulevard Portsmouth, VA 23701 Wake Service Friday, March 15, 2019 5:00pm - 8:00pm Union Baptist Missionary Church 5414 Nansemond Pkwy, Suffolk, VA 23435 Service Saturday, March 16, 2019 12 Noon Union Baptist Missionary Church 5414 Nansemond Pkwy, Suffolk, VA 23435 Entombment Meadowbrook Memorial Gardens 4569 Shoulders Hill Rd, Suffolk, VA 23435

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Condolences(17)

  1. reply
    Wilhemina LaMorris Cuffee says

    My prayers are with the family. I pray for comfort and strength.

  2. reply
    Rev. Marian Johnson, Liberty Baptist Church, Waverly says

    Our prayers are with the family. So sorry for your loss.

  3. reply
    M.Turner says

    My condolence is with the all the family. At this time remember James 4:8 and it says, “Draw close to God and he will draw close to you. Remember Jehovah God is always there for you. Sorry for you lost.

  4. reply
    Joan E Manlove says

    With Deepest Sympathy In The Loss Of Your Father.
    Passing Time Can Never Dim A Father’s Love – For His Three Lovely Daughters Or Your Love For Him. His Love Will Be With You Always In So Many Ways. With Sympathy And Love. Se”lah

  5. reply
    Ronald L.Taylor says

    Saddened to hear of Dr. Russell’s passing. I pray for comfort and peace for his family.

  6. reply
    Brother Lamont Simmons says

    “My deepest sympathy goes out to the family, friends, colleagues and neighbors on the passing of Reverend Russell. He was a fine man and is sorely missed.”

  7. reply
    Steven S. Anderson says

    Prayers of comfort for you and your family.

  8. reply
    Ann Wiggins says

    My heart breaks for all his family. Dr. Russell was a blessing to me when I served as a School Board member and as a friend ever since. His love of the Lord was evident in his love of all people – especially children. Praying for those left behind to mourn and miss him. God bless you.

  9. reply
    Deep Creek High School Faculty and Staff says

    To the Russell Family and Friends: We are so very sorry for your loss. We pray God will comfort you during this difficult time of grief. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  10. reply
    Maria A Lerman says

    To the Russell Family, I am so sorry for your loss. It’s a loss to the world for a loss of a man that help spread and teach the word of our Lord. His presence help flourish joy to everyone he touched. I pray that you find peace in this difficult time. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  11. reply
    Donna Wood says

    I was saddened to hear of cousin Bill’s passing. I am sure you are grieving and struggling to find comfort at this time. May God strengthen all of you in the days ahead. Weeping may endure for a night, but joy will come with the morning.

    God bless,
    Donna Wood

  12. reply
    Kontanita Albergottie says

    I was so sorry to hear of Dr. Russell’s passing, he was a delightful man whom I have fond memories of from Harlem Ele. in Wilmington. He would ride his motorcycle in the hall and have us all excited. I think he may have been my first childhood crush, he was so handsome. When we would get send to his office for misbehaving he would show us his big paddle in the corner by just looking at it while he reprimanded us. But we never felt threaten because he did it with love. He was truly an access to him community.

  13. reply
    Bishop Bernard Williams, D.D. says

    It is with a deep sense of humility, and great respect I offer my condolences to this great man of valor. Although we were not personal acquaintances, we did interact over the years, and I felt I was made the better after each meeting. He was indeed an integral extension of the distinguished Russell dynasty who in more recent years continued the fight for ,recognition of his old Alma Mater, PACTS/Union Kempsville. Rest easy from your gallant labor soldier! You have fought a good fight, and earned your reward for your faithfulness.

    Bishop Bernard Williams, D.D.

  14. reply
    Muriel P. Barefield, Ed.D. says

    To the Russell Family: I am so deeply saddened by the death of Dr. Russell. I will miss the banter that always occurred whenever we’d see one another. I will also pray for your comfort and strength as you begin this journey.

    • reply
      Merita Edwards Brinkley says

      To the Russell Family, please know that the Edwards and Brinkley family’s are grateful to God for the time we were graced with Pastor Russell’s presence. He willingly showed up with a smile, great sense of humor and words of encouragement whenever he visited. My mom and dad transitioned before Pastor but I am grateful, thankful and blessed to have been in the presence of a humble saint. Until the trumpet sounds, take your rest Pastor. May God’s peace and Pastor’s loving memories forever reside in your hearts. God bless and keep you all.
      With deepest sympathy and love,

  15. reply
    Don and Kathleen Sullivan says

    May God provide comfort to the Russell family. We mourn with you at this time. We will miss our beloved Pastor Russell. We know he is resting in our Savior’s arms.

  16. reply
    Lisa says

    I’m truly sorry for the loss of your loved one. We look forward to the day when all those in the memorial tombs will hear Christ voice and come out, John 5:28,29
    Please go to JW.org for more encouragement.

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