Ms. Cynthia Elmira Williams Bailey of Tampa passed away Tuesday, January 28th, 2020. A homegoing celebration will be held Saturday, February 8th, 2020 at 11:00 a.m. at Mt. Pleasant Missionary Baptist Church, 2002 N. Rome Avenue, with Dr. C. T. Kirkland, Pastor officiating. Interment will follow in Rest Haven Memorial Park Cemetery.
Cynthia, affectionately known as “Cynt”, was a lifelong resident of the Tampa Bay area. She was educated in the public schools of Hillsborough County, graduating from A.P. Leto High School in 1967. She obtained her Associate of Arts Degree in Christian Education, as well as a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Religious Education from Florida Beacon College, Faith Christian Satellite Campus.
Reared in Odessa (Keystone), Florida, she dedicated her life to Christ and joined the First Baptist Church of Keystone at the age of five. It was then that she discovered her passion for singing. After service, she was often called upon to sing the only song she knew, “I Got a New Home Over in Zion”.
As she grew older, she continued to sing in church, talent shows, and her high school chorus. She joined the Florida Mass Choir under the leadership of Revs. Arthur T. Jones and Milton Biggham. She later joined The New Redemptive Ensemble, leading “Holy Boldness” on the groups debut album titled The Time is Now. She traveled extensively with the Ensemble, performing with many gospel artists including the late Rev. James Cleveland and the Mighty Clouds of Joy. After the group disbanded, she continued to sing locally at various church events, weddings, funerals, and banquets.
Some of her favorite pastimes included fishing, working in the yard, bowling, ceramics, and of course singing. While employed at a seafood company, she played softball for the company’s team where she was the pitcher and often hit home runs. She was an avid Buccaneer fan and enjoyed attending games when she could.
In 1983, She joined Mt. Pleasant Missionary Baptist Church where she has been an active and faithful member since. She was a former president and longstanding member the Sanctuary Choir. She volunteered her time to help serve the homeless and less fortunate at the Mt. Pleasant Mercy Kitchen. She was also active in the South Florida Progressive Baptist Association. She remained a faithful member of the choir until her illness. Cynthia sang her last song, “Lord Do It” at a benefit program held in her honor at Mt. Pleasant on November 10th, 2019.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Walza Bell Williams and James Vann. She leaves to cherish her memory: Daughter, Shonda Bailey Livingston (Diomedes); Grandchildren, Aaron Bailey, Briana Mosley, Deja Christian; Brother, Emory “Leo” Williams; Sister, Mabel Leonard;Granddog, Croix “Pookie Dookie” Bailey; a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and other family members; Sisters in Christ, Sandra Greene, Dorothy Odom, Annie Morris, Gloria Williams Pendleton, Rubye King, and a host of other friends.
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