By The Family of Bernice O. Vaughan
Bernice O. Vaughan, was born Sept. 12, 1915 in Meherrin Va., the sixth child and twin sister of Beulah (deceased), to Preston and Irene (Streat) Winkler. Her maternal grandfather, Sam Street was the property of slave master David Street (Prince Edward County Virginia) and in 1848 willed to David’s daughter Susan Street at a value of $100. Her maternal grandmother was a mulatto named Louisa Banks Streat, whom all called “Grandma Lou”. Her paternal grandparents, born in Mecklenburg and Brunswick County, Va., were Lewis and Ann Winkler. As a young girl growing up in Virginia she attended the Levi Baptist church and school. She was one of few in her community that went to the 12th grade. (In 2017, Levi honored her longevity). Her mother died at an early age and Grandma Lou helped her dad raise her and her siblings.
While in Virginia, she met and married the love of her life Edward Odell Vaughan (deceased 2005). Upon his death, Bernice and Edward had spent over 75 years of married life together. From this union 13 children were born: James Odell (deceased Vietnam 1965 casualty of war), Lovelena Lorraine-Watson (deceased 2008), Delores Vaughan (deceased 1937); Walter (deceased 2019), Elizabeth Nesbit, Marjorie Queen, Beulah Reeves, Bernadine Scruggs, Janice Faulkner, along with Carroll, Gary, Robert and Tyrone Vaughan. She is the grandmother of 38, great grandmother of 62, great-great grandmother of 48, and great, great great grandmother of 4. In addition, she and her husband raised three boys that were friends of her sons, Joe, William and Gill.
She is the matriarch of the Vaughan/Winkler/Streat family and the oldest living of her 23 siblings; seven of whom are still alive.
Bernice O. Vaughan
This year as she celebrates 105 years of life, family, friends and God’s blessing, we can not celebrate in the usual fashion, but many will come from near and far celebrate her via a birthday parade.
The mayor of Baltimore City has already issued “A Mayoral Salute” on her behalf.
Still, at times feisty, yet sometimes moving slow and forgetful, you will for sure know what is on her mind without speculation. Though she has experienced many storms, she is thankful that God has allowed her many blessings to outweigh them all. She loves french fries and Manischewitz blackberry wine. She attributes her long life to her belief in God and knowing how to treat everyone.
Bernice worked in the Baltimore City Public Schools for over 30 years where she extended her love and family by embracing the many children she interacted with on a daily basis. She is the amazing foundation that keeps our family together. To her family, her friends, her neighbors and so many more, she is just “Granny.” If you ask her what next she would say: “keep on living.”