Beatrice Rhae Nelson (Weaver) was born in 1934, a product of Waco, TX. She was the third child of Elijah Bowman Weaver and Pearl Spratt Weaver. Her childhood home was a safe and secure base where her imagination and individuality were supported by her community and she was exposed to a variety of interests. A devout believer at an early age, Beatrice accepted Christ at Belmont Baptist Church in Waco, TX.
Her parents, siblings, and relatives encouraged and supported Beatrice’s desire to further her education and her involvement in the community because she had a desire to service the needs of the youth and young adults. After getting her BA in English at Paul Quinn College in Dallas, TX, she became an Instructor of Education and soon after Dean of Women at her alma mater. She also received her Master of Arts degree in Education, Counseling & Guidance from Texas Southern University in Houston where she worked as a Women’s Dormitory Assistant.
In 1964, she married Allen Weldon Nelson, a Christian man, who attended Texas College in Tyler, Texas. Allen and Beatrice met at a Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity – Zeta Phi Beta Sorority social where their hearts were knit together. After marriage, Allen and Beatrice lived in Fort Hood, TX. Allen received a job offer to work for Sawtell Administration in California and they moved to Los Angeles, CA in 1966, before finally settling in Carson, CA. A few years later, they were blessed with a daughter, Robin. With their daughter, they traveled to Texas regularly visiting family, attended and participated in various community, civic, and social organizations while also being active in various ministries at Judson Baptist Church.
After arriving in Los Angeles, Beatrice was first employed at Pepperdine University as secretary in the admission office of the Dean of Students and then taught English at Walton Middle School in Compton, CA. She later transferred to Compton High School where she not only taught English, but was a Department Chair, Projects Manager, and Federal Projects Coordinator with a staff of thirty-three members whose activities included bilingual projects. It was her daily goal to “infuse new content and enrichment into the school curriculum, enhance academic proficiency among students with deficiencies, and provide Christian leadership to youth though the church, school, and community.” In 1999, after 30+ years of service, Beatrice retired from the Compton Unified School District.
Sadly, Beatrice’s husband, Allen, passed away suddenly in 1987. With her daughter off in college, she decided to renew her interest in community service. Beatrice was a very active member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority-Lambda Pi Zeta Chapter, Top Ladies of Distinction, Order of the Eastern Star, The Paul Quinn Alumni Association of Los Angeles, NAACP, National Council Negro Women, Friends of the Homeless, LA Mission, Disabled Veterans of America, American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, Brotherhood Crusade, National Pan Hellenic Council, PTA, March of Dimes, and the National Democratic Association.
Due to her distinguished community service, Beatrice received many awards, recognitions, and honors, including the following:
Beatrice was also very proud to be the “Royal Blue and White Family.” She was initiated into Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. in 1956 through the Delta Upsilon Zeta Chapter in Waco, TX and her husband, Allen, was initiated into Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. at Texas College. Her daughter, Robin, became a Zeta Legacy at UCLA and her son-in-law, Rev. Clifford Young Jr., is also a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. Additionally, her sister, Adell Weaver Cephus, and brother-in-law Benny R. Cephus are also members of the “Phi Beta Family.”
When Beatrice had some down time, she played softball, table tennis, spent time with her grandchildren, and enjoyed traveling. One of the highlights of her many travels was going to Seoul, Korea in 1991. Beatrice shared a love for jazz music as did her husband Allen, but her favorite genre was gospel music and her favorite song was “You Brought the Sunshine” by The Clark Sisters.
Beatrice Rhae Nelson passed away on March 5, 2022 with her daughter at her side. She was preceded in death by her husband, parents and all of her siblings and their spouses, Adell Weaver Cephus (Benny), Edwin Weaver (Norma) and Arlington Weaver (Velma). She is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Robin Nelson Young and Rev. Clifford O. Young Jr., her grandchildren; Clifford O’Dell Young III and Catheryn Oliva Young; her nieces, Sherrill Simpson and Jackie Etheridge; her nephews, Arlington Weaver Jr., Blaine Weaver, Patrick Weaver, and Cedric Cephus; grand nephew Charles Etheridge and a host of cousins and friends. She will be laid to rest next to her husband, Allen Weldon Nelson, at Doris Miller Cemetery in Waco, TX.
The family wishes to acknowledge the personal love and care provided by her caretakers Vernettie Daniels, Tinay Romain, and Olivia Boudreaux.
Viewing is Friday, April 1, 2022 from 5pm-9pm at the Skyrose Chapel, Rose Hills Memorial Park 3888 Workman Mill Road, Whittier, CA from 5pm-9pm.
Celebration of Life Service is Saturday, April 2, 2022 at 11:00am will take place at Judson Baptist Church 451 E. 223rd St., Carson, CA 90746
Graveside Service is Tuesday, April 5, 2022 at 1:00pm at the Doris Miller Memorial Park – Martin Luther King Garden – 4800 Bellmead Dr. Waco, TX. 76706. Services entrusted to McDowell Funeral Home, Waco, TX.