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Pauline Blakney

June 6, 1929 July 30, 2016
Pauline Blakney
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Obituary for Pauline Blakney

Remembering the Life & Legacy
of Our Beloved
Tuesday, August 9, 2016
11:00 a.m.
Wood Funeral Home, Inc.
5537-39 West Girard Avenue
Philadelphia, PA  19131
Life Story
A much beloved mother, sister and aunt Pauline King Blakney, passed away quietly on Saturday, July 30, 2016 at her residence in Northeast Philadelphia.
Pauline was born on June 6, 1929 to North Philadelphia businessman and community leader, Preston Hugh King, Sr. and his wife, hosiery boutique owner, Agnes Cullen King, first cousin of Countee Cullen.
Pauline graduated from Simon Gratz High School and later received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Pennsylvania College of Arts and Design. She enjoyed all forms of art and took on oil painting, writing poetry and during her early years, singing, at age fourteen with the H. Elkan Opera Company. Further honing her skills as a soprano singing for the Dra-Mu Opera company gave her the opportunity to perform at the Academy of Music in several of the company’s operas. At twenty-five, she proudly received the M. Gottlieb Painting Award. Ms. Blakney also used her love of the arts to serve others, often volunteering to play the piano for worship services of the Sunday Breakfast Association, an organization dedicated to aiding the homeless. As early as 1996, Pauline had published poetry  and in 2002 she wrote and had published a book of poems, titled ”Everywhere the City and Other Poems,” which she dedicated to the memory of her parents. Pauline fully thrust herself into these activities and others for many years.
Pauline Blakney’s professional life began notably as she was among the very first African American employees to be hired by Wanamaker’s department store and the very first at Woolworth’s, which was of enough distinction to be covered by local Philadelphia newspapers, The Bulletin and the Philadelphia Tribune. Later in life, taking after her mother, she too owned and operated a clothing boutique in the Mount Airy neighborhood of Philadelphia.
Pauline married Otis Blakney in 1965. Sadly that marriage dissolved. Afterwards Pauline lived a considerably less active and much quieter life. She, however, was always fiercely independent, wanting things “her way”, often refusing the assistance of others at times when she needed it. Despite that, she was blessed to have lived a long and fruitful life.
Pauline Blakney leaves to mourn her passing, her son, Preston Hugh King, III (Beverly King), her siblings Cornelia Camp, Verna Hobson and Preston King, Jr., along with many nieces and nephews and a host of other family and friends.

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