Today we celebrate the life and legacy of Kathleen Brailey Forte, who went to be with the Lord, after suffering an illness, at McLeod Regional Medical Center on February 9, 2022. Kathleen, who was affectionately called, “Pee Wee”, was born on October 18, 1940, in Darlington County. She was the daughter of the late William Taft Brailey and Sara Mae Smith Brailey. She lived her entire life in Darlington County and was educated in the public schools of the area. She received her CNA from Florence Darlington Technical Institute.
At an early age she accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior at Antioch Missionary Baptist Church in McBee, S.C. She served faithfully on the Usher Board, Missionary Society and was a dedicated member of the Kitchen Committee; she later became a faithful member of Kay Branch Missionary Baptist Church, where she loved participating in Sunday school.
She was first united in marriage in 1957 to Carlessie Williams Sr. and from that union they were blessed with seven children. On May 11, 1984, she was united in holy matrimony with Thomas Forte where she acquired eight stepchildren.
Kathleen was a loving mother, wife, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She treated her nieces and nephews like they were her own. She loved helping people and feeding them. You would never leave her presence hungry. She tried to feed everyone that she met, and her food was amazing. Cooking and baking were her passion, and you could tell by the taste of her biscuits. If you ever had one of her chocolate cakes, dumplings, or collard greens you were hooked for life. She took great pride in her cooking. Kathleen was a nurturer by nature and cared for many people before she became ill. She was an avid reader and loved listening to Lee Williams and the Spiritual QC’s.
Kathleen was preceded in death by her loving husband Thomas Forte, her father and mother, William Taft Brailey and Sara Mae Smith Brailey; stepchildren Mildred Forte, Willie Marion Forte and Gregory Forte, her brothers Willie Brailey, Daniel Brailey and Nathaniel Brailey, one sister, Anna Laura Evans and her best friend, Modestine Byrd.
Those left to cherish her memories are: five daughters, Leslie (Bonty) Jerman, Tena (Timothy) Forte, Ellen (Paul) Fox, Olive Mae (Daryl) Garner all of Hartsville, SC and Sophia (Dan) Williams-Shanks of Virginia Beach, Virginia; two sons, Carlessie (Carol) Williams Jr. of Hartsville, SC and Joseph Williams of Miami, Florida; one step-daughter, Katherine Hunter, four step-sons; Thomas (Sophia) Marine, Billy (Carolyn) Forte, Timothy (Tena) Forte all of Hartsville, SC and Zachary Forte of Florence, SC; siblings, Emma Jane (Jimmie) McDaniel, Carrie Wingate, Frankie (Chris) Brailey, Viola Jett, Lucinda Fountain; ten grandchildren: Shemel (Laurence) Thomas, Eric (Kim) Williams, Timothy J. Forte, Paula (Mark) Wright, Regina Williams, Gabrielle (Drew) McCall, Maurice Fox, Danielle Garner, Brae Williams, Angelina Williams; fifteen great grandchildren; special brother in-law, Robert Evans; two close friends, Lois Forte and Shirley Jackson and a host of nieces, nephews and other close relatives and friends.
Please keep the family of Kathleen Brailey Forte in your thoughts and prayers.