Clano Cornelius Stephens, age107, was born September 12, 1912 in Dawson (Terrell County), Georgia where he received his formal education from the public school system. He continued his education by attending Ft. Valley State College, Savannah State College and graduated from Albany State College. At the time of his demise he was the oldest living alumni of Albany State College (now Albany State University, Albany, Ga.).
He served as principal in his hometown school system (City of Dawson Public School System) and as an Industrial Arts vocational instructor in the Waycross Public School System, Waycross, Georgia.
He was the second oldest living Army Veteran of World War ll. During his service in the Army he taught black soldiers how to read and write before going off to war.
He served as the first commander of the Georgia Amvet (American Veterans) association and also served as commander of the Amvet Post 621 in Waycross, Ga.
He was owner of the first and only African American motel in Waycross known as “Steve’s Motel”. This motel served as a rest stop for Blacks American traveling Highway US 1 in the 50’s and 60’. He was also owner of a night club and bar in Waycross..
He was the oldest member of the Georgia State Conference of the NAACP, He was a former member of the Waycross Men’s Criteria Club, member of the Black Athletic Association, employee of the Atlanta Life Insurance Co. Served on the Boards of Satilla Regional Medical Center and the Waycross Housing Authority for over twenty years.
He departed this life on Saturday, June 27,2020 after an illness. He was preceded in death by his mother, Nannie Stephens; his wife, Clara Mae Blakely Stephens and three siblings, Walter, Hallie and Charlie.
A funeral service for Mr. Stephens was held Friday, July 3, 2020 in Waycross, Georgia with Fluker Funeral Home. 985 Ossie Davis Parkway, Waycross, Georgia entrusted with arrangements.
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