Story and photos
By Jacquelyn Darby
Many friends, beloved family members and other loving supporters gathered in honor of Mother Martha Warrick on Saturday, Jan. 21, for a beautiful 90th birthday celebration. A woman of God – who dedicated her life to serving the Lord, her family and her community – received long-overdue recognition for her service and contributions.
Mother Martha Warrick, originally from Crockett, Texas, moved to Arizona in 1941. She is the mother of seven children; six living, the oldest is Brother Charles Fanniel and the youngest, Pastor Darrell Grissum. She raised her children mainly on her own, and many of the neighborhood children growing up also came to love Mother Warrick – even regarding her as a second mother. Some of those own parents now passed away still look to her for love and support.
According to her family, she was always a hard worker, striving to support her family as a beautician in her shop Martha’s Beauty Salon, which she owned and operated for more 30 years.
Mother Warrick has always remained active in the local community. Despite raising her own family, among many of her endeavors were “The West Side Mother’s Club,” a group, she founded more than 25 years ago, devoted to providing assistance the local teachers in her district. Several of the teachers she helped came forward expressing appreciation for the much-needed support provided her organization.
She loves the Lord and as a woman of God, faithfully attending Emmanuel Baptist Church as a loyal member for more than 40 years where she actively participates.
According to her, “some of her pastimes include serving in the church, and the community, and is a she loves stylish hats, and clothes.” She also enjoys cooking and entertaining, especially for her beloved family – which now includes 26 grandchildren, and 21 great-grandchildren. Her children lovingly say, “she is still the matriarch and the backbone of the family.”
The 90th Birthday Celebration presented in her was truly a beautiful occasion with her loving family, friends and special guests Local dignitaries even came to pay tribute. Lovely floral arrangements along with other beautiful decorations transformed the fellowship hall of the South Phoenix Missionary Baptist Church, the location of the occasion. An array of photographs featuring Warrick dressed in some of her favorite fashionable outfits over the years were also on display.
The celebration began with a special prayer of gratitude and blessing and a scripture reading in honor of the occasion. After an official welcome, local ministers, special guests and other dignitaries offered special remarks in commemoration of Mother Warrick. After a prayer, the guests enjoyed a catered dinner provided by the family.
The program continued with remarks and words of encouragement from friends and family members who warmly expressed their love, appreciation for the honoree and thanking for her hard work and her for service to the Lord.
The final highlight of tje day featured words from the honoree herself. Surrounded by her family, Mother Warrick thanked God for allowing her to reach this special birthday.