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Celestine Porterfield

October 19, 1923 May 21, 2016
Celestine Porterfield
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Obituary for Celestine Porterfield

We will Celebrate the Life & Legacy
of Our Beloved Mother

Thursday, June 9, 2016

 at St. Matthew AME Church
 215 N. 57th Street
(57th & Summer Streets)
Philadelphia, PA  19139

 9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Homegoing Service:
11:00 a.m. 

Glenwood Memorial Gardens
Broomall, PA  19008
Prayerfully yours,
The Children & Family
Life Story
Edythe Celestine DeGraffenriedt Porterfield (affectionately known to family and friends as Celeste) was born October 19, 1923 to Hezekiah DeGraffenriedt and Mary Beatrice Hackney DeGraffenriedt. She was the oldest of two children, sister to the late Helen DeGraffenriedt Rogers. Celeste was married to the late Silas Jeff Porterfield until his death in March 2000.

Educated in the Philadelphia school system, she graduated from the Philadelphia High School for Girls and attended Temple University for two years. She valued education and encouraged others to set educational goals supportive of their individual potential and ability.

Celeste worked many years for the federal government including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) from which she retired in 1986. She received several awards for outstanding service. Before retiring she became the Administrative Officer at EEOC, supervising staff with personnel responsibilities, finance and budget responsibilities, and other administrative functions. She valued this experience and opportunity and maintained contact with colleagues through her membership in the National Association of Retired Federal Employees.

Celeste was devoted to her husband, children, grandchildren, and family members and enjoyed time spent with them. Always available to lend support, many sought her advice. She provided encouragement to others with an open mind, without judgement or bias, or a need to promote her own agenda. She taught her children the values of accepting difference, appreciation for friends and family, and helping others when opportunity presented itself.

She recognized, and said that church and God were a very important part of life. She became a member of St. Matthew A.M.E. Church in 1940 and served as an active member of the Hostess Club during the late 1950’s and 1960’s.

Although health challenges in later years limited some of the activities that she enjoyed, such as traveling, entertaining family and friends, her seasonal theater outings, and social events; she never complained about her condition and handled limitations with grace and dignity. She loved shopping and continued to dress in style.

Celeste is survived by her three children Charlene Porterfield Ingram, Melvin Porterfield and Janice Porterfield; daughter-in-law Valeria Porterfield; grandchildren Melvin Porterfield, Jr., Pamela Boone, Angela Ingram, Melanie Porterfield Wright, Brandon Porterfield and grandson-in-law Apollo Wright; great grandchildren Jayden Riddix, Michael Riddix, and Mason Wright; and a host of extended family and friends.

Loving and kind in all her ways,
Upright and just to the end of her days,
Sincere and true in heart and mind,
What beautiful memories she left behind.

In loving memory, the Family

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