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There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven. (Ecclesiastes 3: 1)
A Time to Be Born: On March 27, 1973 in Estill, South Carolina, Sonya Theresa Smith was born in Beaufort, South Carolina to Mr. Oliver and Mrs. Barbara Smith.
A Time to Gather Stones: Her grandmother always used to say, "Take Gods Grace and Mercy with you and everything will work out fine". Sonya believed that and believed God pointed her footsteps in the direction in which to go thus at a young age, she decided to give her life to God. She was an active member of Lovewell Baptist Church in Lena, SC. After moving to Kingstree, she was a faithful member of Mt. Beulah United Methodist Church, Lake City, SC.
Sonya received her early years of education in Hampton School District Two where she graduated from Estill High School in 1991. She touched and influenced so many lives and made some lifelong friends. Sonya's college education began at Claflin College (now Claflin University) in Orangeburg, SC on a four year volleyball scholarship. During her matriculation, she was a member of the E.E. Just Science Club, Ladies of Black and Gold, was voted Senior Class President and joined the illustrious Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated. In 1995 she received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology; however, she couldn't find her niche after graduation. She wanted to know what her calling was; therefore, Sonya crossed the fence to South Carolina State University and received her Masters of Arts in Teaching Degree in 1998. She became a certified teacher and loved every minute since.
While at Claflin College, Sonya found the love of her life, Marcus H. Burgess. The love they shared blossomed into a union of marriage on December 26, 1999. From this union God gave them three beautiful children, a son Marcus Henrico Burgess, II (12), Mariana LaShawn Burgess (8) and Tyler Cierra Janene Burgess(6).
A Time to Scatter Stones: Sonya moved to Kingstree, South Carolina where she continued her teaching career in the Williamsburg County School District as a Science teacher at Kingstree Senior High School. During this time she was recognized as a Sallie Mae Teacher of the year Finalist, voted Teacher of the Year (2003 and 2006), District Teacher of the Year Finalist (2006), Who's Who Among High School Teachers, was featured in the Community Times as one of the 30 Leaders under 40 as Young Educators and received an Inspirational/Motivational Teacher Award in 2010.
Sonya also held many positions at school such as: Science Department Chairperson, SACS Chairperson, SAFE~ T Evaluator, Mentor, Adjunct Professor for Francis Marion University Teacher Cadet Program, Jr. Class Co-Advisor,
Varsity Girls' Volleyball Coach (of which she took the team to its first playoff game in the school's history in 2004), in her third year as Varsity Girls Basketball Coach she helped lead the girls to two consecutive Region Championships in 40 years.
A Time to Love: Until her demise, Sonya loved and cherished her family whom she leaves to cherish fond memories.
They are: her loving and devoted husband and friend for 13 years, Marcus Henrico Burgess; three beautiful children: Marcus Henrico Burgess II "Deuce", Mariana LaShawn Burgess and Tyler Cierra Janene Burgess; adoring parents:
Oliver and Barbara Smith; a brother, Darryl (Lakeisha) Smith of Georgia; three sisters: Stephanie Smith, Erica (Jonathan) Spratley and Brandi Washington all of Columbia, SC; father and mother-in-law: Mack and Janie Burgess; grandmother-in-law, Mary Burgess; brothers- in-law: Carlos Burgess, Mack PJ Burgess, William (Sherri) Burgess and Raymon (Markeisha) Burgess; aunts: Betty (Charles) Smith, Carolyn (Joe) Brantley, Margie (Nathaniel) David, Mary Smith, Lydia Smith, Ruth Atkins, Queen (Edward) Pressley, and Hattie R. Cooper; uncles: Harry (Catherine) Taylor, Jackie (Diane) Taylor, Clark (Joyce) Taylor, Charles T. Taylor, Henry Smith, Lester Smith, Paul Miller, Will G. Cooper,
Clifton (Elizabeth) Cooper, James (Eleasc) Cooper, Robert (Joyce) Cooper, Willie Lee (Ernestine) Burgess and James (Mary) Burgess; a niece she reared as her own, AaLeeyah Housey; special children she cared for as her own: LaShonda
June, [alisa Brown and Kenneth Davis; treasured friends: Cathy Williams, Shyvonne Brown-Alford, Eric and Fatima Washington, Chandra Roberts Brooks, Consenna Solomon, and Consquela Hopkins; and a host of nieces, nephews,
other relatives and dear friends.
A Time to Die: On Monday, February 18, 2013 God decided that Sonya had done all that she could and decided to bring two of His angels home, Sonya and Baby Burgess.
February 24, 2013, 2:00 P.M.
Kingstree Senior High School Gymnasium
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Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Wake Service
February 23, 2013, 7:00 P.M.
St. Paul United Methodist Church
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