Janet (Andrews) ColemanDecember 8, 1931 ~ May 22, 2016 (age 84)
On Sunday May 22, 2016, Angels descended from Heaven and escorted Janet Andrews Coleman to her Father’s house. Janet, affectionately known as Topsy, was born December 8, 1931 in Sperryville, Virginia to the late Bernice Roy. She was preceded in death by her brother Cornelius “Tack” and her sister Janey “Boo”.
Topsy grew up in Culpeper, Virginia with her Aunt Ethel and her cousin, Lovenia “Baby”, to continue her education in the “Big City”. She attended Culpeper Training School where she met her future husband, James Coleman. Topsy graduated from George Washington Carver High School, where she was a majorette in the school band, in 1950.
Topsy formally met James Coleman while attending Culpeper Training School; however, it wasn’t until 1951 while he was on leave from the Army that their paths crossed again. By way of “family permission”, their courtship formally began. While dating, James was deployed to France and Germany and kept in contact through written letters. Upon his return, he asked for her hand in marriage.
On Thursday, July 5, 1956, the two became one and were married. James later received orders to go back to France, but this time he had his wife “Topsy” by his side. While stationed there, they enjoyed traveling to the various countryside towns and getting to know the flavor of France and the other surrounding countries, including Germany, Belgium and Holland. James thought Topsy had such a love for traveling that he would show her the world. While in Europe, they began their family and ultimately had two children, Michelle and Zachary.
Topsy enjoyed being a homemaker while nurturing her children and being a loving, encouraging wife; a constant pillar of strength, she was the epitome of a virtuous woman. She was an avid Redskin Fan and was known for her crochet tributes to the Burgundy and Gold. She loved to dance and loved Sam Cooke (next to James Coleman). She also enjoyed cooking, knitting, crocheting, and watching her “Soaps”. She was an avid gardener; many considered her the “Go To” girl for the “How-To-Questions” because of her green thumb. She was also known for her style, with her beautiful hair and fashionable attire. In addition to these joyous activities, one of her most treasured past times was spending time with her grandchildren, Zachary II, Brandon, and Melanee. She took pride in their accomplishments, and she especially enjoyed attending their sports events and dance recitals. She also nurtured extended family and made her children’s friends feel like family as well. A most loyal friend, Topsy maintained connections through decades, celebrating the accomplishments of others, and ensuring that they felt considered and loved.
She’s Momma, Mom, Grandma, Topsy, Auntie, Top-Top, Aunt Topsy, Ms. Janet, Janet, and Mrs. Coleman – and although known by different names, she was loved all the same.
Her loving memories will continue to be embraced by her husband and best friend, James H. Coleman of more than 59 years, and her legacy will thrive in and through the lives of her loving family: Her daughter, Michelle (Lester), her son, Zachary (Tracy); grandchildren, Zachary II (Jasmine), Brandon, Melanee; grandchildren through marriage, Nicole, and Iris; two great-granddaughters through marriage Gabrielle and Olivia; a special niece Peggy (Bobby); her first cousin Hortense and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends whose lives she greatly touched.
“In my Father’s house are many mansions…
If it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also”. John 14:2-3.
225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl, 17, Chicago, IL 60601,