Eugenia Upshaw-Watkins was born on July 4, 1938 to Rosie and James Upshaw in Birmingham, AL. The fourth of five children and only daughter, Eugenia was affectionately called “Doll Baby”, Jean or Mama Jeanie. Eugenia accepted Christ as an early age at Friendship Baptist Church in East Chicago.
The day after graduation from Washington High School in 1957, Jean set out for a new start in New York City. Eugenia worked for Grant 5 & 10.After leaving Grant she went to work for the New York Department of Social & Human Services. She retired in 1994.
In 1964 Eugenia married Douglas Fletcher and they had one son Douglas Jr. (Dougie.).
Eugenia returned home to East Chicago to be closer to family& friends. Upon returning home, sheworked for Value City Department Store for many years.
She joined Goodwill Baptist Church East Chicago, IN where she sang in the Gospel Choir and worked the church rummage sale.
In 2007 she married Rev Wardell Watkins and joined the Zion Missionary Baptist church under the leadership of PastorJ.C. Wade, Jr. &Rev. Charles L. Thompson, Jr. She remained a faithful member until she became ill.
Eugenia was known as an impeccable dresser, eloquent speaker, and profound storyteller. She was often asked to recite her favorite poem “Drinking from The Saucer” by John Paul Moore. She loved board games and would often beat her husband and anyone else that challenged her.
Eugenia was proceeded in death by her parents James and Rosie Upshaw brothers Abraham Coleand Jimmie leeUpshaw. Sister in laws Yvonne Upshaw, Lelia Cole, and .Eddie Mae Upshaw
Eugenia is survived by her loving husband, Rev. Wardell Watkins of East Chicago, Sons Douglas “Dougie” Fletcher of Tampa, FL, Wade M. Watkins, of Sacramento, CA; Daughters: DuJuana (Winton) Duckett of Ellenwood, GA, Lynn S. Watkins, of East Chicago, IN; Brothers: James Upshaw of East Chicago, Arthur (Alma) Upshaw of Valejo, CA, Daniel (Fannie) Upshaw of Los Angeles, CA; Best Friend &confident Hazel White of North Carolina and a host of nieces, nephews, grandchildren, cousin & friends.
Jean will truly be missed.
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