Lula Mae Banks was born in 1934 to Henry and Navida Neely Banks as one of two twins in Deering Missouri and eldest of six children. Her twin Linda did not survive. She decided as a memorial to her twin sister, to use her name as a "Nickname" throughout her entire life; her family and friends addressed her as "Linda or Aunt Linda."
Lula Mae and her remaining 5 siblings suffered the loss of their parents and their beloved uncle Jack Banks, Sr., stepped up to keep his family together. Alongside her Uncle Jack, Linda became disciplinarian to not only her siblings but to her cousins as well whose mother had passed.
Lula Mae received her early education in St. Louis Missouri. Later, her parents relocated the family to Coolidge Arizona where she received her formal education at Boree Corner and Coolidge High schools.
Lula Mae was blessed to obtain employment as a Supervisor Chef for the State of Arizona, Maricopa County Detention Center; as a Counseling Supervisor & Nutritionist for the Arizona Girls Ranch; and as a Nutritionist Supervisor for the State of California Youth Authority.
At the age of 14, Lula Mae was baptized and received Christ. She relocated to Sacramento California and became a member of the Pentecostal Temple Worldwide COGIC, under the leadership of Bishop Arthur D. Dosty. Mother Ross was a Licensed Evangelist Missionary in the COGIC organization. She often attended the Holy Convocations in both Memphis and St. Louis. It was as she put it, " Her American Mecca.” With her long-time closest friend of 73 years, Magnolia White Sells, they knew they were the "Belles of the Ball" at the conventions being dressed to the nines every day.
At her demise, Lula Mae was a member of the St. Paul COGIC, under the leadership of Pastor Emeritus Henderson Ford and current Pastor Larry Joyner. She loved to Praise & Worship God. She lived the scriptures of St. Matthew 25:35-36; St. John 15:12; and St. John 8:32.
Lula Mae loved to cook, sew, travel, and loved being “well dressed” in the latest fashions. She was a successful Entrepreneur. She owned and operated a restaurant (“Lula Mae’s Kitchen & Linda’s Table, as well as a night club, “T-99 & John L’s Players Club), along with the love of her life, John L. Balleng. She was a street smart and astute, savvy businesswoman. She was truly a “people’s person” who was loved and respected because of her "in yo face" reality checks. She had the heart of a true Humanitarian. She loved “in action” to both family & friends. She was a very generous and compassionate person and supported many people.
Lula Mae is preceded in death by her parents, Henry & Navida (Neely) Banks; twin sister Linda Banks; Uncle Jack Banks, Sr.; Brothers: Jack Banks, Jr., Olius Grant Banks, Johnnie Roy Gholston; Sisters: Demitria Banks Gregg, ClytheonBanks-Smith; Close & Dearest friends of 73 years: Jacob & Magnolia Sells, Sr.
She leaves to cherish her loving memories: Her children: Navida "Anise" Banks & Emanuel " Bozie" Milton of Sacramento CA.; Debra Ann Evans, Sacramento CA; Adopted daughter: Mary Sanders(Ronnie) of Jacksonville FL.; Grandsons: Emanuel Milton, Jr., Yuma AZ., Daniel K. Sanders (Rondisha) of Jacksonville FL; Great grandsons: David, Darrion, Davion Sanders of Jacksonville FL; Siblings: Robert Banks (Alice) Coolidge AZ, Elizabeth Banks Evans of Sacramento CA, CarthellGholston-Taylor, Gloria Jean Gholston-Taylor of Fresno CA, Mildred Banks Cannon(JC) of Phoenix AZ; and a Host of Other Relatives, Close Friends: Mothers Q.T. Dawson, Lizzie Jones of Sacramento CA; Spiritual daughters: Carolyn Sanders, Phoenix AZ; Yolanda Nash, Sacramento CA; Davina Mayfield, Marilyn McKinney, Coolidge AZ, and the St. Paul COGIC family of Sacramento, CA.
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