Annie was born on February 6, 1939, in Roseboro, North Carolina to Capus and Mary Etta Carrol Maxwell. She was the youngest of six siblings. While growing up in the south, nicknames were often given to children and so it was with Annie. She was known by her friends in Roseboro as “Honey Lump”. Annie was taught the importance of family unity and great work ethics. At an early age, she along with her siblings and mother, worked in the fields during the hot summer months, cropping tobacco, picking beans, cotton, blueberries and harvesting potatoes. These were some of the few employment opportunities offered to black families in Roseboro during the 1950’s.
Annie Richards received her formal education in The Roseboro Public School system. She was a member of the Women’s Basketball Team where she played the center position. One of her favorite pastimes was watching both NBA and WNBA basketball games.
After leaving the south for better employment opportunities she resided in New York City. Her first employer was the Hammond family. They owned the prestigious Hammond Art Galleries. Ironically, she was favored, she never had to do the laundry, cleaning, babysitting, or cooking. It provided her a place to stay and great meals. She basically ran errands. Her next employment was with Bronx Coat and Apron. There, she did peace work. In 1964, after passing the employment test, she went to work at Rockland Psychiatric Center in Upstate New York. Assigned to Building 60 as a Rehab Assistant on the Psychiatric Ward, she became a compassionate, caring counselor. She can read people like a book and was extremely perceptive. She assessed and resolved people’s problems quickly and effectively. She had a great sense of humor and a positive attitude. She was never critical or judgmental. She could always help a patient find a better way to express pain, rebellion and anger.” Annie came to meet some of her most trusted friends during her tenure at Rockland, namely, Ann and Elijah Brown, Dorothy Roth, Betty Willis and Rita Shorter.
After working on the ward for 18 years as a rehab assistant therapy aide, Annie was honored with a new appointment. Annie was promoted to a case finder. In this position, she was instrumental in determining client eligibility for community placement. Before she retired, she was voted Employee of the Year in 1976.
Annie retired from Rockland Psychiatric Center in March of 1997. On her 80th Birthday Celebration, she received a proclamation from Rockland County, honoring her meritorious service and outstanding citizenship.
Annie’s Christian experience began at an early age. She sang in the choir at a local Baptist Church in Roseboro, North Carolina under the direction of the late Mrs. Nora McLaurin, one of the great pillars of the community. She was a faithful member of St. Germond’s Presbyterian Church in New City, New York for over 40 years. Annie has been recognized for her generous financial contributions to many charitable organizations, most notably to the Faith and Victory Community Services: Manna Food & Wellness Pantry. Her favorite past time was studying the scriptures and her favorite song was “Oh Lord I Want You to Me”
She met her late husband, Huey Paul Richards, while he was stationed in Fort Bragg, North Carolina as a member of the 82nd Airborne Division. Annie had no biological children, but she was a compassionate and caring mother figure to countless nieces, nephews, grands and great grands. She is our family matriarch and always made us feel loved. We love her dearly and will always cherish her memories.
On December 19, 2021, Annie made her heavenly transition. She is preceded in death by her parents Capus and Mary Etta Maxwell, late husband, Huey Paul Richards, siblings: Linnie Owens, Charlie (Dick) Maxwell, Hannah (Granny Pump) Mangrum, Prince Lee Maxwell and Nellie Gray Barton; special friends, Dorothy Roth, Betty Willis, and Rita Shorter.
She leaves to cherish her memories a host of nieces and nephews, four generations of great nieces and nephews (too numerous to name), cousins and friends.
Graveside service will be Thursday, December 30, 2021 at 1:00 pm at Roseboro Cemetery (Marion-Amos Rd, Roseboro, NC ).
Public Viewing will be Thursday, December 30, 2021 from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm at Butler & Son Funeral Home, Roseboro.
Masks are required to attend services. Graveside will be live-streamed through Butler & Son Funeral Home Facebook at the time of service.
Butler & Son Funeral Home, Inc.
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