Essie Mae Tolbert-Smith was born on August 9, 1958, to the late Eddie and Nora Lee Tolbert, in Early County, Georgia. In 2012, she joined Tabernacle Praise and Outreach Center, where she later became a minister. On April 6, 2018, God called her home. Essie’s presence was pivotal, her heart was passionate, and her life was full of purpose. She was a beloved mother, grandmother, sister, and aunt to her family.
Essie was preceded in death by two brothers David Williams and Willie Tolbert.
She leaves to celebrate a husband, Willie Sam Smith of Blakely GA; four daughters: Erremah Tolbert of Albany, GA, Sherita (Tyrone) Nunnally of Fort Gaines, GA, Rocknekia Tolbert and Jessica (Tavious) Lofton of Blakely, GA; and 14 beautiful grandchildren whom she loved dearly. She also left three brothers: James, Loyless (Barbara), and Gerald (Janice) Tolbert all of Blakely, GA.; six sisters: Betty Jean Jones, Eddie Mae (Orcha) Mackeroy, Stella Lyles, Lilly (Louis) Herron, Samantha Tolbert, and Tammie (Jerome) Graham all of Blakely GA; five brothers in law’s: Jerry Smith of Jacksonville, FL; Rathus, Bobby (Linda) and Ray Charles (Vicki) Smith all of Blakely, GA; two sisters in law : Virginia Graham and Elizabeth Moore of Blakely GA; and a host of aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.
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