Velma Harris (Mama Kitty) was born on February 29, 1924 (Celebrated March 1, because she was a Leap year baby) in Delhi, Louisiana to the late Willie and Cornelia White. She was the ninth child and last survivor of eleven children. She accepted Christ at an early age and was baptized in the river by the late Rev. Len Henderson at Bethel Baptist Church in Delhi, Louisiana.
Velma received her early childhood education in the Delhi, Louisiana School District. She graduated at Delhi High School as the class Salutatorian (She was very proud of her accomplishment). She relocated to Marin City, California in 1946.
Velma was united in Holy Matrimony to the late Johnny Harris, Sr. and to this union six children were born: Barbara Jean, Shirley Ann, Johnny Jr., Michael Earl, Gregory Duane and Lawanda Velma.
Mama Kitty, as she was affectionately called by her community, was also mother to: Gladys Denis (deceased), Matthew Bryant, William Downs, Ruby Threadgill, Mary Edwards, (Mama called her Mayetta) Willie Holtzclaw and Kaiser Alexander(Sexy).
Velma joined First Missionary Baptist Church in 1947 under the leadership of Reverend W. E. Franklin and she remained a member under the leadership of E. Paul Perkins.
Velma worked for Doctor Deneky in Mill Valley for ten years. She also worked as an Avon representative, Amway representative, Election Poll Worker in Marin City, CA, and as an accountant for the Marin City Mothers Guild.
Velma loved her children and grandchildren. She took great pride in nurturing her children. She introduced her children to music and dancing. She was smooth and light on her feet. She loved and treated everyone with respect and welcomed them into her home. She had a kind and gentle spirit. She was outspoken at times, and everyone was “Baby”. She had a great sense of style and loved her hats.
Velma Harris was preceded in death by her parents Cornelia and Willie White, her loving husband Johnny Harris Sr., son Gregory Duane Harris, and her siblings, Willie White, Frances Harris, Tennessee Simpson, Jack White, Anna Smith, Fleeta Oats, George White, Hosea White, Earnest White and Eliza Coleman.
Velma Harris leaves to mourn her memory five children. Barbara Jean Douglas, of Novato, CA, Shirley(Nelson) Willis, of Marin City, CA, Johnny Harris Jr., of San Rafael, CA, Michael(Laurie) Harris, of Suisun, CA, Lawanda(Anthony) Garrison, of Hayward, CA, fifteen grandchildren, nineteen great-grandchildren, and one great-great-granddaughter, one special niece Kate Black, one special cousin Ishmael Hubbard, of Sacramento, CA, and a special friend Annie Small of Marin City, CA and a host of many relatives and friends.