After nearly 20-year absence, Shapreta Smith and her mom amend broken relationship

DALLAS — According to God’s manual, when Jesus said to His disciples: “”A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another,” what He generally insinuated is that such a commandment wasn’t only directed toward the 12 who followed Him daily, but rather it is meant for all of humanity to take heed.

For Shapreta Smith, given the close knit bond she has established with her mother, Shirley Brister, in recent years, it’s safe to assume that she has grasped a thorough understanding of this life-enhancing notion.

MomFeaFor a little more than two decades of Smith’s young life, she and mother admittedly did not have what she described as a “close relationship.”

In fact, as this native of Magnolia, Mississippian tells it, communication between her and her mother was virtually nonexistent.

But after years of soul-searching, self-assessing, and evaluating her ties with her mom, Smith ultimately had come to realization that it was time to officially address what undoubtedly was the grandest barricade of her life.

In a nutshell, Smith, who admittedly “was listening to one side of the story from family members and friends but I never heard her (mother’s) side,” sensed she owed it to herself to amend and bring closer to the distance between her and her mother.

BACK WITH MOM --- For a little more than two decades of Shapreta Smith’s young life, she and mother admittedly did not have what she described as a “close relationship.”  In fact, as this native of Mississippian tells it, communication between her and her mother was virtually nonexistent.  But after years of soul-searching, self-assessing, and evaluating her ties with her mom, Smith ultimately had come to realization that it was time to officially address what undoubtedly was the grandest barricade of life.  In a nutshell, Smith, who admittedly “was listening to one side of the story from family members and friends but I never heard her (mother’s) side,” sensed she owed it to herself to amend and bring closer to the distance between her and her mother.

BACK WITH MOM — For a little more than two decades of Shapreta Smith’s young life, she and mother admittedly did not have what she described as a “close relationship.”
In fact, as this native of Mississippian tells it, communication between her and her mother was virtually nonexistent.
But after years of soul-searching, self-assessing, and evaluating her ties with her mom, Smith ultimately had come to realization that it was time to officially address what undoubtedly was the grandest barricade of life.
In a nutshell, Smith, who admittedly “was listening to one side of the story from family members and friends but I never heard her (mother’s) side,” sensed she owed it to herself to amend and bring closer to the distance between her and her mother.

No doubt, she’s delighted she did as she celebrates MemphiSport’s Second Annual Salute To Mother’s Day.

That’s because today, more than ever before, Smith and her mother have put their checkered past where it belongs: behind them.

“After the truth and a clear understanding had been revealed, God gave us the strength to forgive each other and mend what had been broken so many years ago,” Smith said during a recent interview.

Long before Smith and her mother had reestablished their ties, Smith — who currently resides in the Dallas area with her husband, Malcolm Smith — recalled many nights when she dozed off to sleep on what was a pillow drenched in tears.

“Many nights I cried wondering why I had not been chosen to have my real mother by my side,” Smith said. “I wanted what my younger brother and sister had. Over time, I grew a strong resentment towards her and never wanted to be in her presence and the input from family never made that resentment weaken. So many events happened that it is too many to name. When I grew up, I began to see more and more of her in me.”

And because Smith eventually had begun to assume an assortment of her mother’s characteristics, she sensed it was time the woman who gave birth to her 24 years ago ultimately witness those intriguing habits.

Shapreta Smith and husband, Malcolm, currently reside in the Dallas area.

Shapreta Smith and husband, Malcolm, currently reside in the Dallas area.

Up close and in person.

Before it was all too late.

“One day I called after months of not speaking after a previous disagreement and apologized for the misunderstanding,” said Smith, explaining how she had gone about rekindling her relationship with her mother. “She forgave me and I forgave her and we’ve been rocking ever since. So, no, my tribute isn’t about a memory of being tucked in at night, getting boyfriend advice as a teenager, getting punished for sneaking out, or even spending time together growing up. It is about forgiveness.”

A pivotal life concept that, given the close knit bond she has established with her mother in recent years, Smith has come to grasp and apply to her daily living.

That’s because after a little more than two decades, all is well now.

Mom and daughter are exactly where they supposed to be.

Back together again.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Whether your mother is living or deceased, if you would like to pay homage to your mom, grandmother, wife, girlfriend, etc., with a unique Mother’s Day tribute that will feature an in-depth story like this one, call Reporter Andre Johnson at 901-690-6587 or Facebook message him under “Andre T. Johnson” for details.

DreAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.

Soulsville basketball standout Andrew Hunt, Jr. lobbying for shot at the collegiate level

 

DREAMIN' DREW --- Coached by former University of Memphis standout and Memphis Grizzlies guard Antonio Burks, Soulsville Charter School swingman Andrew Hunt was a key contributor for a Soulsville team that faced arguably some of the best teams in the Shelby-Metro area. “Andrew is a very hardworking player,” Burks said. “He comes to practices every day and worked hard. He is a leader and team player.” Add to the fact that this speedy, 17-year-old athlete --- who according to Burks, whose skills had drawn comparisons to former NBA player Dennis Rodman --- was deemed one of the gustiest players on the team by coaches, and it’s no wonder that even after a year in which he played sparingly, he hasn’t ruled out hope of playing at the collegiate level.

DREAMIN’ DREW — Coached by former University of Memphis standout and Memphis Grizzlies guard Antonio Burks, Soulsville Charter School swingman Andrew Hunt, Jr. was a key contributor for a Soulsville team that faced arguably some of the best teams in the Shelby-Metro area.
“Andrew is a very hardworking player,” Burks said. “He comes to practices every day and worked hard. He is a leader and team player.”
Add to the fact that this speedy, 17-year-old athlete — who according to Burks, whose skills had drawn comparisons to former NBA player Dennis Rodman — was deemed one of the gustiest players on the team by coaches, and it’s no wonder that even after a year in which he played sparingly, he hasn’t ruled out hope of playing at the collegiate level.

As far as Betina Hunt is concerned, it was a foregone conclusion that her son, Andrew Hunt, Jr., would ultimately have a future in basketball.

After all, not only was Betina Hunt’s father once an accomplished high school hoops coach, but she was a fixture as part of an intramural basketball squad during her college days in the mid-1990s.

“Coming from a sports family, it was a given that he would be an athlete,” Betina Hunt told MemphiSport during a recent interview. “I played middle and high school basketball as well.”

To Andrew Hunt’s credit, he essentially has since followed in the footsteps of his mother, considering he managed to make his presence felt in various gymnasiums throughout the basketball-crazed Bluff City.

A 6-foot-1 swingman, Andrew Hunt is a few weeks removed from having completed a prep basketball career for The Soulsville Charter School in South Memphis.

Coached by former University of Memphis standout and Memphis Grizzlies guard Antonio Burks, Andrew Hunt, Jr. was a key contributor for a Soulsville team that faced arguably some of the best teams in the Shelby-Metro area.

“Andrew is a very hardworking player,” Burks said. “He comes to practices every day and worked hard. He is a leader and team player.”

Add to the fact that this speedy, 17-year-old athlete — who according to Burks, whose skills had drawn comparisons to former NBA player Dennis Rodman — was deemed one of the gustiest players on the team by coaches, and it’s no wonder that even after a year in which he played sparingly, he hasn’t ruled out hope of playing at the collegiate level.

In fact, according to Andrew Hunt, Jr. he admittedly is destined to do whatever it takes to suit up in a college basketball uniform.

HOOP DREAMS --- If things ultimately stack up favorably in the coming months for Andrew Hunt --- an honor student who has several offers to enroll in college on an academic scholarship --- the possibility exists that he could very well made good on his lofty ambition of playing college hoops.

HOOP DREAMS — If things ultimately stack up favorably in the coming months for Andrew Hunt, Jr. — an honor student who has several offers to enroll in college on an academic scholarship — the possibility exists that he could very well made good on his lofty ambition of playing college hoops.

“Playing college ball is a dream for me because I always wanted to get a free education at a college or university and use my talent and hard work to excel on the court,” Andrew Hunt, Jr. said. “I love the college game because every game looks like an NBA playoff game with the national media coverage, overly excited fans, the inner anxiety, and the support of my friends and family.”

If things ultimately stack up favorably in the coming months for Andrew Hunt, Jr. — an honor student who has several offers to enroll in college on an academic scholarship — the possibility exists that he could very well made good on his lofty ambition of playing college basketball.

His itinerary, in fact, appears to full, considering he has several scheduled basketball clinics to attend as well as an appearance at the Maximum Exposure Basketball camp in Nashville.

MOM KNOWS BEST --- As far as Betina Hunt is concerned, it was a foregone conclusion that her son, Andrew Hunt, would ultimately have a future in basketball. After all, not only was Betina Hunt’s father once an accomplished high school hoops coach, but she was a fixture as part of an intramural basketball squad during her college days in the mid-1990s. “Coming from a sports family, it was a given that he would be an athlete,” Betina Hunt told MemphiSport during a recent interview. “I played middle and high school basketball as well.”

MOM KNOWS BEST — As far as Betina Hunt is concerned, it was a foregone conclusion that her son, Andrew Hunt, would ultimately have a future in basketball.
After all, not only was Betina Hunt’s father once an accomplished high school hoops coach, but she was a fixture as part of an intramural basketball squad during her college days in the mid-1990s.
“Coming from a sports family, it was a given that he would be an athlete,” Betina Hunt told MemphiSport during a recent interview. “I played middle and high school basketball as well.”

In addition, Andrew Hunt, Jr. will partake in the popular Maximum Exposure Basketball camp in Atlanta in early May and June and is scheduled to play in an All-Star Celebrity Basketball Game in Memphis that will be sanctioned by the Heal the Hood Foundation of Memphis.

After making appearances at camps at Arkansas Tech in late May and a two-day camp in Clarksdale, Mississippi in late June, Andrew Hunt will earn his much-anticipated diploma from Soulsville on May 21.

Given his immense track record on the local and regional basketball circuits, he’s convinced the possibility exists that he will be afforded the opportunity to extend his basketball career beyond high school — something about which his mother had sensed would happen when he first picked up a basketball.

“He began playing basketball in the second grade,” Betina Hunt said. “My immediate reaction for my son was excitement. He has the opportunity to use basketball as a tool to get a college education as well as do what he has grown to love. Basketball is an investment for his future endeavors for being a sports broadcaster/sportswriter. Being an athlete gives him an advantage for his career.”

Said Andrew Hunt, Jr.: “I am hungry and excited to get to the next level, to accomplish my personal goals, and to fulfill the aspirations of the (college) coaches and the program.”

Stay tuned.

Chances are the local sports landscape hasn’t heard the last of this kid.

DrePicAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.

 

COMMENTARY: Memphian Tova Taylor showed more grit than her Tennessee Titans

REMEMBERING TOVA S. TAYLOR (1974-2015)

DALLAS — Tuesday will mark exactly one year that I moved away from Memphis to Dallas.

Tova2While this undoubtedly has been a year filled with an assortment of blessings, challenges, new opportunities, and newly-established friendships as one of this city’s newest media members, I’d be remiss if I did not recall what had transpired two days before I officially bid farewell to my family and close friends in Tennessee.

On Saturday, April 19, at approximately 9 a.m., I stopped to pick up breakfast at the Chick-fil-A restaurant on Union Avenue in midtown Memphis.Tova4

To my surprise, I ran into fellow longtime Memphian and friend, Tova S. Taylor​ who, after greeting me with a hug, expressed to me how saddening it was that Memphis was losing what she deemed “one of its best sportswriters.”

Although I took a moment to poke fun at Fairley High, Tova’s high school alma mater, considering our respective high schools — I am a Whitehaven High alum — are neighborhood rivals and a few football passes away from each other, she made it point to say to me, “Make sure you represent Memphis well in Texas.”

While that was the last — and unfortunately the final — time our paths had crossed, I couldn’t help but recall 363 days ago just how complementary Tova was as I was preparing to leave Memphis.

Which, of course, is among the reasons that on the day before the one-year anniversary of my move to Dallas, I can publicly confess that I am indeed affected by Tova’s untimely death as a result of a horrifying car crash Sunday night. Without question, many of us — most notably on various social media platforms — who befriended this bighearted, compassionate young lady will forever recall along with her wealth of beauty, her unyielding love and affection and admiration for her family, will forever cherish her tireless contributions to Alpha Kappa Alpha, the African-American flagship sorority that was founded at Howard University in 1908.

Tova1Which is to say why her sudden, heart-dropping demise has undoubtedly sent shock waves throughout the social media world, let alone the LeMoyne-Owen College and Whitehaven communities.

Someone, all too soon, has lost a faithful, loving wife, which means that wedding anniversaries will never be the same.Family

Someone, all too soon, has lost an unconditional loving mom, which means that Mother’s Day will never be the same.

Someone, all too soon, has lost a high school classmate, which means that class reunions will never be the same.

Someone, all too soon, has lost a fellow sorority member, which means the familiar rants and chats of “Skee Wee” courtesy of Alpha Kappa Alpha will never sound the same.

And, for me personally, well, going to Chick-fil-A from now on will never be the same, in large part because 363 days ago, Tova, an avid Tennessee Titans fans who exemplified such familiar pleasantries Memphians had come to embrace, took the time to not only extend to me well-wishes as I prepared to bolt the Bluff City, but she paused to share something about which I had never heard in my 15-year professional print journalism career.

That is, Memphis was losing what she labeled as “one of its best sportswriters.”

Tova, you will be surely missed, in large part because you didn’t take for granted how precious, but fragile life is, because even when facing the toughest of life’s obstacles, you steadfastly demonstrated more grit and assertiveness and resilience than your Titans had shown last season.

So thanks a bunch, Tova, for propelling me to high spirits during a time I needed it the most.

Surely, it is a foregone conclusion that come Tuesday morning, the one-year anniversary of my relocation from Memphis to Dallas, I will drop in and pick up breakfast at Chick-fil-A.

Only this time, like wedding anniversaries, Mother’s Days, class reunions, and sorority chants, it won’t be the same.

DrePicAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.

Mavs coach Rick Carlisle praises each Southwest Division team on making playoffs

SOUTHWEST SUCCESS --- Dallas Mavericks coach Carlisle’s most memorable campaign as an NBA coach came four years ago when he led Dirk Nowitzki and the Mavs to their first world championship in franchise history, a six-game upset of the Miami Heat in their best-of-7 NBA Finals series. That year, three teams from the NBA’s Southwest Division (Dallas, San Antonio, and Memphis) had clinched playoff berths. This year, however, each of the division’s five teams have advanced to the postseason, a feat that was effectively decided on the regular season’s final day when the New Orleans Pelicans clinched a berth with a 108-103 win against the Spurs. (Joe Murphy/Getty Images Photo)

SOUTHWEST SUCCESS — Dallas Mavericks coach Carlisle’s most memorable campaign as an NBA coach came four years ago when he led Dirk Nowitzki and the Mavs to their first world championship in franchise history, a six-game upset of the Miami Heat in their best-of-7 NBA Finals series. That year, three teams from the NBA’s Southwest Division (Dallas, San Antonio, and Memphis) had clinched playoff berths. This year, however, each of the division’s five teams have advanced to the postseason, a feat that was effectively decided on the regular season’s final day when the New Orleans Pelicans clinched a berth with a 108-103 win against the Spurs. (Joe Murphy/Getty Images Photo)

DALLAS — First team to 16 wins…

“The first one to 16 will have a pretty nice piece for their jewelry cabinet,” Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said while addressing reporters Thursday afternoon at American Airlines Center.

Carlisle was alluding to the 16 teams that have punched tickets to this year’s NBA playoffs, a nearly two-month-long marathon that will culminate with one franchise hoisting the covenant Larry O’Brien trophy.

Now in his seventh season as the Mavericks’ head man, arguably Carlisle’s most memorable campaign as an NBA coach came four years ago when he led Dallas to its first world championship in franchise history, a six-game upset of the Miami Heat in their best-of-7 NBA Finals series.

That year, three teams from the NBA’s Southwest Division (Dallas, San Antonio, and Memphis) had clinched playoff berths.

This year, however, each of the division’s five teams have advanced to the postseason, a feat that was effectively decided on the regular season’s final day when the New Orleans Pelicans clinched a berth with a 108-103 win against the Spurs.

HOT HANDED HARDEN --- The Southwest Division champion Rockets (56-26) are led by NBA Most Valuable Player candidate James Harden, the league’s second-leading scorer. Winners of three straight, the Rockets are in the postseason for a third consecutive year. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

HOT HANDED HARDEN — The Southwest Division champion Rockets (56-26) are led by NBA Most Valuable Player candidate James Harden, the league’s second-leading scorer.
Winners of three straight, the Rockets are in the postseason for a third consecutive year. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

“I think this is the toughest division in all of (professional) sports,” Carlisle said. “It has been for the last several years.”

Among the reasons is the Spurs (55-27) undoubtedly have been the division’s most consistent and dominant team. Making their franchise-best 18 consecutive postseason appearance when they open defense of their NBA title Sunday night at the No. 3 seed Los Angeles Clippers (56-26), the six-seeded Spurs have won five world titles during this stretch.

As for the Mavs, erasing the memory of last year’s seven-game opening-round defeat to San Antonio certainly will be a brutal task, considering seventh-seeded Dallas (50-32) will face the No. 2 seed Houston Rockets Saturday at 8:30 p.m. CST in Game 1 of their best-of-7 opening-round series.

BLOCK PARTY --- Marc Gasol (left) and the fifth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies (55-27), whose 9-7 division record was the best among the other four teams, is making their franchise-record fifth consecutive playoff appearance and will open postseason play Sunday night at 7 CST against the fourth-seeded Portland Trail Blazers in FedExForum. (Photo by Jerome Miron/Getty Images)

BLOCK PARTY — Marc Gasol (left) and the fifth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies (55-27), whose 9-7 division record was the best among the other four teams, is making their franchise-record fifth consecutive playoff appearance and will open postseason play Sunday night at 7 CST against the fourth-seeded Portland Trail Blazers in FedExForum. (Photo by Jerome Miron/Getty Images)

The Rockets (56-26) are led by NBA Most Valuable Player candidate James Harden, the league’s second-leading scorer.

Winners of three straight, the Rockets are in the postseason for a third consecutive year. Dallas is making its second straight playoff appearance.

The fifth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies (55-27), whose 9-7 division record was the best among the other four teams, is making their franchise-record fifth consecutive playoff appearance and will open postseason play Sunday night at 7 CST against the fourth-seeded Portland Trail Blazers (51-31) in FedExForum.

Memphis’ best postseason outing during this span took place two years ago when the Grizzlies manufactured their highest winning percentage and advanced to the Western Conference Finals for the first time in team history.

Arguably the surprise Southwest Division team to make the playoffs is New Orleans.

The NBA’s fourth youngest team with an average age of 24.9 years, the Pelicans (45-37) played arguably their most complete game of the season, which couldn’t have come at a better time, considering New Orleans controlled its own destiny.

Led by Anthony Davis’ 31 points and 13 rebounds, the Pelicans withstood a furious late rally by the defending champs to solidify the Western Conference’s eighth and final playoff spot in the regular season finale, thus ending a four-year postseason drought.

Next up for upset-minded Pelicans is an opening-round date with the top-seeded Golden State Warriors, starting with Saturday’s Game 1 at 2:30 p.m. CST.

Led by Stephen Curry, whom many consider the frontrunner for league MVP, the high-octane Warriors enter the postseason with the NBA’s best record at 67-15.

Come Saturday, the race to 16 wins begins.

Which, of course, begs the question: Will the Larry O’Brien trophy remain in the Southwest Division for a second consecutive year?

As far as Carlisle is concerned, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone if it does.

“It’s just quality teams from top to bottom,” Carlisle said of the Southwest Division. “During the battles of the division opponents during the year, I mean those were slugfest games. They were extremely meaningful. There’s a lot of wear and tear. (Games) were very physical. They’re emotional. But when you get a division like this, that’s the way it’s supposed to be, and it gets everybody primed for this time of year.”

Let the nearly two-month-long marathon begin.

First team to 16 wins…

DrePicAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send an email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.

Khiandra Marsland celebates mother’s move to Texas, unyielding love and support

MarslandMainDALLAS — For Khiandra Marsland, whether times are favorable or unfavorable, her mother will make it a point to be there.

Without question.

“Throughout my life, whenever I needed her she was there,” Marsland said. “The distance from Texas to Louisiana was not an issue. If I called her for anything, she would jump in her van and head on over.”

Fortunately for Marsland, a mother of two (Kendrick and Khiandra), such a life-altering trend had gone on for a little more than 13 years before her mother chose to relocate from their native hometown of Alexandria, Louisiana to Dallas last May.

Today, however, it seems the close knit bond between Marsland and her mother, Verandia Roland Marsland, has become tighter than it has ever been, in large part because this big-hearted woman who gave her life deemed it necessary to never become inseparable from each of her five grandchildren.

“My mother is also affectionately known as Mimi by her grandchildren,” Khiandra explained. “She has often said that she could train others on how to be a grandmother. It’s a role that she does not take lightly. She showers all five of her grandkids with love and care packages filled with their favorite treats. I can truly say my mom gives love to not only her family and friends, but her community as well.”

MOTHERLY LOVE --- It is, after all, because of her Verandia Roland Marsland's unyielding love and guidance, that life in Texas has given way to a renewed sense of solace and comfort and direction, something about which has benefited Khiandra Marsland mightily in recent months.  So much for the past hardships and seemingly insurmountable hurdles she had to clear.  Mama made it a point to be there from the outset. “She is a godly example of how we are to walk and be children of integrity,” Khiandra said. “Now that I am a mother, it is my goal to help my children achieve their greatest dreams and to be their biggest cheerleader along the way.” (Photos submitted by. K. Marsland)

MOTHERLY LOVE — It is, after all, because of her Verandia Roland Marsland’s unyielding love and guidance, that life in Texas has given way to a renewed sense of solace and comfort and direction, something about which has benefited Khiandra Marsland mightily in recent months.
So much for the past hardships and seemingly insurmountable hurdles she had to clear.
Mama made it a point to be there from the outset.
“She is a godly example of how we are to walk and be children of integrity,” Khiandra said. “Now that I am a mother, it is my goal to help my children achieve their greatest dreams and to be their biggest cheerleader along the way.” (Photos submitted by. K. Marsland)

In commemorating MemphiSport’s Salute To Mother’s Day 2015, Khiandra said among the attributes she labels most intriguing about her mother is how she routinely goes to great lengths to inspire and impact the lives of people from various walks of life.

MONUMENTAL IMPACT --- “Mimi,” a devoted godly woman who instilled in her children Biblical principles she advised them to apply to their respective lifestyle, is widely viewed as a compassionate individual whose reputation is such that she has a heart for people.  “My mother stands out from others because she has a heart of gold,” Khiandra said. “She is truly one of the most giving people I know. She never meets a stranger and has a godly affection for the elderly. She will see an elderly person in the store and will go up to them and strike up a conversation. Before long, she has them laughing and talking and treating them like they are family.”

MONUMENTAL IMPACT — “Mimi,” a devoted godly woman who instilled in her children Biblical principles she advised them to apply to their respective lifestyle, is widely viewed as a compassionate individual whose reputation is such that she has a heart for people.
“My mother stands out from others because she has a heart of gold,” Khiandra said. “She is truly one of the most giving people I know. She never meets a stranger and has a godly affection for the elderly. She will see an elderly person in the store and will go up to them and strike up a conversation. Before long, she has them laughing and talking and treating them like they are family.”

In a nutshell, “Mimi,” a devoted godly woman who instilled in her children Biblical principles she advised them to apply to their respective lifestyle, is widely viewed as a compassionate individual whose reputation is such that she has a heart for people.

“My mother stands out from others because she has a heart of gold,” Khiandra said. “She is truly one of the most giving people I know. She never meets a stranger and has a godly affection for the elderly. She will see an elderly person in the store and will go up to them and strike up a conversation. Before long, she has them laughing and talking and treating them like they are family.”

That Verandia steadfastly demonstrates love for her family and others has served as a monumental example, of sorts, for Khiandra, an educator for the Grand Prairie Independent School District. That’s because not only does Khiandra, a graduate of Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, displays compassion and love for her students but, most importantly, she instills similar qualities in the lives of her children.

Fortunately for her, her mother is now in Dallas to help spread such love to Kendrick and Khiandra, an unlikely development she welcomed wholeheartedly when she discovered that her mom would be relocating from Louisiana.

“I was humbled, shocked, surprised, and in awe of her love and support of me and my kids when I found she was moving,” Khiandra, who was regrouping from as assortment of challenges at the time, said of her mother’s move to Texas. “I was feeling overwhelmed and a loss for direction and it was her support and through God’s guidance that I landed on my feet.”

Which, to the delight of Khiandra, sums up why this latest Mother’s Day will hold an even greater meaning.

It is, after all, because of her mother’s unyielding love and guidance, that life in Texas has given way to a renewed sense of solace and comfort and direction, something about which has benefited Khiandra and her children mightily in recent months.

So much for the past hardships and seemingly insurmountable hurdles she had to clear.

That’s because “Mimi” has made it a point to be there from the outset.

“She is a godly example of how we are to walk and be children of integrity,” Khiandra said. “Now that I am a mother, it is my goal to help my children achieve their greatest dreams and to be their biggest cheerleader along the way.”

Whether times for them are favorable or unfavorable.

Without question.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Whether your mother is living or deceased, if you would like to pay homage to your mom, grandmother, wife, girlfriend, etc., with a unique Mother’s Day tribute that will feature an in-depth story like this one, call Reporter Andre Johnson at 901-690-6587 or Facebook message him under “Andre T. Johnson” for details.

DreAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist. 

 

Memphian Tawana Robinson survives near-death experience with love of mother

SUPER MOM --- In kicking off MemphiSport’s “Salute to Mother Day 2015,” Robinson, sensed it was only befitting to pay homage to her mother who, according to her, is widely known as the “family, church, and neighborhood paramedic.”  “If anyone is sick, Marie will be there,” Robinson said. “My mom stands out in so many ways.” (Photos submitted by T. Robinson)

SUPER MOM — In kicking off MemphiSport’s “Salute to Mother Day 2015,” Robinson, sensed it was only befitting to pay homage to her mother who, according to her, is widely known as the “family, church, and neighborhood paramedic.”
“If anyone is sick, Marie will be there,” Robinson said. “My mom stands out in so many ways.” (Photos submitted by T. Robinson)

Tawana Robinson has a heartfelt message she’d like to express to her mother, Marie Odum.

“Mom, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything you’ve done and are doing,” Robinson said. “I love you so much. May God continue to shower you with blessings.”

In kicking off MemphiSport’s “Salute to Mother Day 2015,” Robinson, sensed it was only befitting to pay homage to her mother who, according to her, is widely known as the “family, church, and neighborhood paramedic.”

“If anyone is sick, Marie will be there,” Robinson said. “My mom stands out in so many ways.”

To grasp a thorough understanding of just how appreciative Robinson is of her mother, look no further than the seemingly tumultuous circumstances that surrounded Odum’s life some 15 years ago.

At the time, Odum was forced to retire from the Memphis Fire Department after she sustained what Robinson described as “multiple injuries.” Odum, who also was a paramedic, was injured during a fire while carrying a number of patients and fulfilling other essential duties.

TRUE CHAMPION --- Marie Odum was forced to retire from the Memphis Fire Department after she sustained what Robinson described as “multiple injuries.” Odum, who also was a paramedic, was injured during a fire while carrying a number of patients and fulfilling other essential duties.   Although such injuries had given way to an unceremonious departure from a job she held for a little more than a decade, Robinson said among the things she recall was how her mother had steadfastly clung to a spirited disposition.  “She never lost her beautiful smile,” Robinson said. “She would always say, ‘Everything happens for a reason’ and ‘It's okay.’”

TRUE CHAMPION — Marie Odum was forced to retire from the Memphis Fire Department after she sustained what Robinson described as “multiple injuries.” Odum, who also was a paramedic, was injured during a fire while carrying a number of patients and fulfilling other essential duties.
Although such injuries had given way to an unceremonious departure from a job she held for a little more than a decade, Robinson said among the things she recall was how her mother had steadfastly clung to a spirited disposition.
“She never lost her beautiful smile,” Robinson said. “She would always say, ‘Everything happens for a reason’ and ‘It’s okay.’”

Although such injuries had given way to an unceremonious departure from a job she held for a little more than a decade, Robinson said among the things she recall was how her mother had steadfastly clung to a spirited disposition.

“She never lost her beautiful smile,” Robinson said. “She would always say, ‘Everything happens for a reason’ and ‘It’s okay.’”

Approximately five years later, more disheartening news had struck Robinson’s family.

Robinson, in fact, had become what she deemed as “gravely ill” after being diagnosed with Stevens-Johnson, which is a form of toxic epidermal necrolysis and a life-threatening skin condition in which cell death causes the epidermis to separate from the dermis. According to a report on MayoClinic.org, Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a medical emergency that usually requires hospitalization. Treatment focuses on eliminating the underlying cause, controlling symptoms and minimizing complications.

MARVELOUS MARIE --- Today, more than ever before, Mother’s Day essentially has taken on a whole new meaning as far as Robinson is concerned.  “Growing up in the church, her parents taught her seven was the number of completion,” Robinson said. “Despite pressure from doctors, my mom and aunt stood firmly on God's word. Through grace and mercy, I made a full recovery with my mom, close family, and friends by my side. I was down for 1 ½ years. My mom cared for me and my one-year-old old son until I was able to work again. I feel there aren't enough words to describe how much she means to her entire family. When I talk about her all I can say is, "That's my girl."

MARVELOUS MARIE — Today, more than ever before, Mother’s Day essentially has taken on a whole new meaning as far as Robinson is concerned.
“Growing up in the church, her parents taught her seven was the number of completion,” Robinson said. “Despite pressure from doctors, my mom and aunt stood firmly on God’s word. Through grace and mercy, I made a full recovery with my mom, close family, and friends by my side. I was down for 1 ½ years. My mom cared for me and my one-year-old old son until I was able to work again. I feel there aren’t enough words to describe how much she means to her entire family. When I talk about her all I can say is, “That’s my girl.”

As Robinson explained, “My mom along with my Aunt Bea were faced with making a hard decision. They were told I wouldn’t survive and should consider taking me off life support. With her strong faith in God, along with family and friends, a prayer chain started. My mom decided she wouldn’t make a decision until I was on life support for seven days.”

Fortunately for Robinson, a mother of two (Omarie and Tamia), she managed to survived what was an apparent near-death experience, thanks in large part to the unyielding love and support of her mother.

Today, more than ever before, Mother’s Day essentially has taken on a whole new meaning as far as Robinson is concerned.

“Growing up in the church, her parents taught her seven was the number of completion,” Robinson said. “Despite pressure from doctors, my mom and aunt stood firmly on God’s word. Through grace and mercy, I made a full recovery with my mom, close family, and friends by my side. I was down for 1 ½ years. My mom cared for me and my one-year-old old son until I was able to work again. I feel there aren’t enough words to describe how much she means to her entire family. When I talk about her all I can say is, “That’s my girl.”

Which, of course, is why Robinson has yet another heartfelt message she’d like to express to her mother.

“In my eyes she’s simply amazing,” Robinson said.

Now we know why.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Whether your mother is living or deceased, if you would like to pay homage to your mom, grandmother, wife, girlfriend, etc., with a unique Mother’s Day tribute that will feature an in-depth story like this one, call Reporter Andre Johnson at 901-690-6587 or Facebook message him under “Andre T. Johnson” for details.

DreAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.

 

BRIAN ROBINSON, SR.: ‘Here’s wishing you a fabulous 2015 birthday celebration!’

SURPRISE!!!! On behalf of NBA Southwest Division Reporter Andre Johnson and the staff of MemphiSport.com, we extend a colossal birthday shout out to avid Detroit Lions fanatic, Brian Robinson, Sr.!

“Brian, man, you are one of the coolest, most likeable individuals I’ve met since my move to Texas. So it is only befitting that our staff wish you a memorable, joyous, exuberant birthday celebration. You know, Jesus made you a fabulous, life-changing, emphatic promise long before you were conceived. That is, He promised that you might have life and that more abundantly. In a nutshell, even on a day such as your birthday, you are a priesthood, a King’s child. So as you enjoy and embrace everything that this day brings, know that God has strategically recorded every trial, tribulation, and setback you’ve endured to this point. In other words, that means your latter days will be better Bri1than your past!” (John 10:10; Jeremiah 29:11)A. Johnson Bri3

detroit-lions

Your Next Plan CEO Aretha Young impacting lives through her thriving organization

DUNCANVILLE, Texas — Without question, Aretha Renee Young believes that God has a divine purpose for her life.

LIFE CHANGER --- A native of New Jersey, Aretha Renee Young, who currently resides in Lewisville, Texas, is the operations manager and chief executive officer --- or Global Expansion Leader -- for Your Next Plan, a life-enhancing organization that has gained a keen reputation for meeting the needs of people through it four entities. Among them: Estate Planning – Which aids individuals with wills and hospital/bank directives and other needs.  Essential Services – Which offers free analysts of everyday products and services geared toward savings.  In addition, this entity offers wellness plans and insurance savings, most notably residential and commercial.  Entrepreneurial Services –This entity is available for those who aspire to engage in personal and/or business ownership, which will inspire individuals to earn additional income along with their current salary and/or savings. Job Preparation – This entity is geared largely toward aiding individuals to seek for jobs, compile and create resumes, as well as assisting them with interviewing techniques.

LIFE CHANGER — A native of New Jersey, Aretha Renee Young, who currently resides in Lewisville, Texas, is the operations manager and chief executive officer — or Global Expansion Leader — for Your Next Plan, a life-enhancing organization that has gained a keen reputation for meeting the needs of people through it four entities. Among them:
Estate Planning – Which aids individuals with wills and hospital/bank directives and other needs.
Essential Services – Which offers free analysts of everyday products and services geared toward savings. In addition, this entity offers wellness plans and insurance savings, most notably residential and commercial.
Entrepreneurial Services –This entity is available for those who aspire to engage in personal and/or business ownership, which will inspire individuals to earn additional income along with their current salary and/or savings.
Job Preparation – This entity is geared largely toward aiding individuals to seek for jobs, compile and create resumes, as well as assisting them with interviewing techniques.

Part of that purpose, she says, is to enable people from various walks of life to maximize their fullest potential, to see from beyond where they are, to grasp a thorough understanding that there is more to life than what they witness in the confines of their respective community.

In a nutshell, Young strongly believes she undoubtedly was created to routinely esteem others higher than herself.

After all, that is among the reasons that Young, 51, established “Your Next Plan,” a thriving nonprofit organization that is designed to enhance and serve people, regardless of their race, creed, or color.

A native of New Jersey, Young, who currently resides in Irving, Texas, is the operations manager and chief executive officer — or Global Expansion Leader — for Your Next Plan, a life-enhancing organization that has gained a keen reputation for meeting the needs of people through its four distinct entities.

Among them:

Estate Planning – Which aids individuals with wills and hospital/bank directives and other needs.
Essential Services – Which offers free analysts of everyday products and services geared toward savings. In addition, this entity offers wellness plans and insurance savings, most notably residential and commercial.
Entrepreneurial Services –This entity is available for those who aspire to engage in personal and/or business ownership, which will inspire individuals to earn additional income along with their current salary and/or savings.
Job Preparation – This entity is geared largely toward aiding individuals to seek for jobs, compile and create resumes, as well as assisting them with interviewing techniques.

Long before organizing her business venture, Young was a fixture in a variety of sports, particularly as an avid basketball coach.

To her credit, she has coached two senior women’s basketball teams, having led them to multiple championships, including titles in the 65 and 75-year-old bracket divisions.

In guiding her clubs to championships, Young was responsible for coaching players ranging between the ages of 50 and 80. The teams routinely played in a three-on-three format in games that were comprised of two 10-minute quarters.

By and large, Young’s teams had emerged as a national standout, considering they made appearances in a variety of cities across the country.

“I had been a basketball coach for over 20 years,” Young said. “I taught strong fundamentals and when the players understood why and how we did a certain moves, they were able to play with more confident.”

According to Young, it was her competitive drive as a successful hoops coach that essentially fueled her desire to start Your Next Plan.

“That’s the same with life passions,” Young said. “When someone can discover their passion in life and how they can be successful, when someone can understand business and processes then create wealth themselves, that’s when life is strengthen and families flourish.”

An organization that strives to inspire individuals from various ethnic groups and backgrounds, among the things Young said she deems mostly intriguing about Your Next Plan is that she routinely is afforded the opportunity to meet, interact with, and help anyone, regardless of their present circumstances.

“In this business, I’ve gotten to meet all types of peoples from difference walks of life,” she said. “No one is untouchable to everyday life situations. I get to assists and help change lives. I have travel to various cities within some 48 states in America. I am able to associate myself with persons from all walks of life. I am able to attend conferences large and small in all types of business platforms.”

Besides enhancing and impacting lives, Young acknowledges that among the reasons her organization has been successful is that it steadfastly has executed its longstanding mission.

“When your “why” makes you cry, you become serious about what you are doing,” Young explained. “My personal mission is to free up my time and take money as an issue out of my life’s equation so I will have more time for with my seniors — dad, mom, and auntie. One aspect is to teach the importance of having major life issue’s paperwork in order before the issue comes up. And the other aspect is to help people to realize their own passions and potential and show them alternate ways they can make money and save money on everyday products and services.”

“I have always had an independent spirit,” Young continued. “My parents always told us to, ‘At least try it,’ so now that I believe I can. I do this because I can. I can do all things through Christ that strengthen me.”

Thanks, in large part to the divine purpose God has for her life.

Without question.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Your Next Plan conducts several types of meeting to accommodate anyone one-on-one, including private in-home business receptions, conferences, and other platforms.  Aretha Young can be reached via her website at: www.yournextplan.net.  Also, follow her on social media under LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, or send email to: yournextplan@gmail.com.


DreAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.

Ardmore High RB Jordan Roberts embracing life lessons while excelling on the field

Kaniesha Roberts is proud, hardworking single mother of four.

Without question, her son, Jordan Michael Roberts is her go-to child.

COMING OUT PARTY --- While Ardmore (Okla.) High running back Jordan Roberts did not make any starts as a sophomore, he did a masterful job of complementing the dazzling play of Ardmore star running back Orrin Walker in what was his first full season of varsity ball. Having appeared in 10 of the Tigers’ 14 games, Jordan amassed 222 yards on 13 carried and produced three rushing scores.  What was especially impressive about Jordan’s contributions was that he showed no signs of a player who was a newcomer to major high school football, in large part because he averaged 17.1 yards per carry --- attributes Ardmore offensive coordinator Corey Russell believes are a sign of things to come as Jordan prepares for what figures to be a breakthrough junior campaign. (Photos submitted by K. Roberts)

COMING OUT PARTY — While Ardmore (Okla.) High running back Jordan Roberts did not make any starts as a sophomore, he did a masterful job of complementing the dazzling play of Ardmore star running back Orrin Walker in what was his first full season of varsity ball.
Having appeared in 10 of the Tigers’ 14 games, Jordan amassed 222 yards on 13 carried and produced three rushing scores.
What was especially impressive about Jordan’s contributions was that he showed no signs of a player who was a newcomer to major high school football, in large part because he averaged 17.1 yards per carry — attributes Ardmore offensive coordinator Corey Russell believes are a sign of things to come as Jordan prepares for what figures to be a breakthrough junior campaign. (Photos submitted by K. Roberts)

“He had to learn to be the man of the house,” Kaniesha Roberts said during a recent interview. “He helps me with his siblings.”

To get a clear indication of why Jordan’s mother essentially has deemed Jordan — her oldest child — the catalyst of the Roberts household, look no further than the seemingly turbulent encounters that mired the Ardmore (Okla.) High running back in recent years.

For starters, Jordan, who recently wrapped up a stellar sophomore season for the Tigers, had to assume what his mother described as the “man of the house” role, considering his father has been in and out prison virtually his entire life.

Add to the fact that this speedy, talented athlete informed his mother recently that his girlfriend is expecting a child, and it’s no wonder Jordan admittedly has adopted a newfound disposition on life.

STAR WATCH --- Fortunately for Jordan, his attractive height and versatility haven’t gone unnoticed by college scouts, considering the University of Oklahoma are amongst the schools that has expressed interest in him.  Such a recruiting process figures to improve considerably if he keeps doing the necessary things to grasp attention.

STAR WATCH — Fortunately for Jordan, his attractive height and versatility haven’t gone unnoticed by college scouts, considering the University of Oklahoma are amongst the schools that has expressed interest in him.
Such a recruiting process figures to improve considerably if he keeps doing the necessary things to grasp attention.

“When he came and told me he could possibly have a baby on the way, my heart dropped and I explained to him his dreams don’t stop,” Kaniesha Roberts said. “He has family support and God makes no mistakes.”

Although having a baby at such a young age will likely give way to an assortment of challenges, the 16-year-old Jordan would be the first to tell you that such an unlikely encounter has only fueled his competitive drive to excel both on and off the field.

To his credit, the 6-foot, 160-pound rusher held his own in helping propel Ardmore to a 12-2 record, an Oklahoma District 1-5A championship, and a lengthy postseason run this past season.

While he did not make any starts, he did a masterful job of complementing the dazzling play of Ardmore star running back Orrin Walker in what was his first full season of varsity ball.

Having appeared in 10 of the Tigers’ 14 games, Jordan amassed 222 yards on 13 carried and produced three rushing scores.

What was especially impressive about Jordan’s contributions was that he showed no signs of a player who was a newcomer to major high school football, in large part because he averaged 17.1 yards per carry — attributes Ardmore offensive coordinator Corey Russell believes are a sign of things to come as Jordan prepares for what figures to be a breakthrough junior campaign.

“Jordan is one heck of a talent,” Russell said. “He is tall and has solid speed and great hands. Jordan sort of glides with the ball in his hands. He will contribute greatly on offense and defense. I can see Jordan playing at the FCS level.”

While Jordan had proven to be efficient on the offensive side of the ball for the high-powered Tigers, he also enjoyed quality minutes on defense when he assumed the cornerback position, a role he is expected to become more acclimated with next season.

GROWING PAINS --- To get a clear indication of why Jordan’s mother, Kaniesha Roberts, essentially has deemed Jordan --- her oldest child --- the catalyst of the Roberts household, look no further than the seemingly turbulent encounters that mired the Ardmore (Okla.) High running back in recent years.  For starters, Jordan, who recently wrapped up a stellar sophomore season for the Tigers, had to assume what his mother described as the “man of the house” role, considering his father has been in and out prison virtually his entire life. Add to the fact that this speedy, talented athlete informed his mother recently that his girlfriend is expecting a child, and it’s no wonder Jordan admittedly has adopted a newfound disposition on life.

GROWING PAINS — To get a clear indication of why Jordan’s mother, Kaniesha Roberts, essentially has deemed Jordan — her oldest child — the catalyst of the Roberts household, look no further than the seemingly turbulent encounters that mired the Ardmore (Okla.) High running back in recent years.
For starters, Jordan, who recently wrapped up a stellar sophomore season for the Tigers, had to assume what his mother described as the “man of the house” role, considering his father has been in and out prison virtually his entire life.
Add to the fact that this speedy, talented athlete informed his mother recently that his girlfriend is expecting a child, and it’s no wonder Jordan admittedly has adopted a newfound disposition on life.

“I really have the heart for the game and play smart football,” Jordan said. “I work on my game every day from 2-5 p.m. except on Sundays. That’s my rest day.”

Fortunately for Jordan, his attractive height and versatility haven’t gone unnoticed by college scouts, considering the University of Oklahoma are amongst the schools that has expressed interest in him.

Chances are such a recruiting process figures to improve considerably if he keeps doing the necessary things to grasp attention.

“I want to go college and get an education,” Jordan said. “I have a little one on the way and, as my mother did for me, I have to take care of my responsibility. I have to grow up a little faster in life.”

Just like this past season on the field, it’s a monumental challenge Jordan admittedly appears destined to tackle head on.

“I’m ready to take that journey,” said Jordan, alluding to the challenge of being a teenage father. “It’s in God’s plan and I won’t question God. My mom is a single parent of four and she is my No. 1 fan. My family has supported me since day one. I want to give back to my family by succeeding in life and following my dreams, and that’s to play football for life.”

A long-awaited dream that undoubtedly will make a familiar single mother of four one happy camper.

DrePicAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send an email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.

 

Carolina salon owner Yvette Perry-Bullock servicing celebs as thriving entrepreneur

Vette1For Yvette Denise Perry-Bullock, she learned a sense of responsibility long before many of her peers.

Having grown up Detroit, Michigan, Perry-Bullock’s first real job came at the age of nine when she assumed a newspaper route post.

From that point on, it seemed that striving to maximize her potential became virtually a customary trend.

Widely known as “Pinky” by many who have come to known her since her youth, Perry-Bullock is owner and operator of Styles By Pinky Salon and Hair Gallery in Fayetteville, North Carolina.

Located at 5329 Yadkin Road (Suite B) in the heart of Fayetteville, Perry-Bullock doesn’t shy away from the notion that she boasts what she describes as an “entrepreneurial flair” and “competitive nature,” essential attributes she contends have given way to her steadfastly striving to offer the best available service to her array of clients in greater Fayetteville.

RISING STAR --- Widely known as "Pinky" by many who have come to known her since her youth, Yvette Perry-Bullock is owner and operator of Styles By Pinky Salon and Hair Gallery in Fayetteville, North Carolina.  Located at 5329 Yadkin Road (Suite B) in the heart of Fayetteville, Perry-Bullock doesn’t shy away from the notion that she boasts what she describes as an “entrepreneurial flair” and “competitive nature,” essential attributes she contends have given way to her steadfastly striving to offer the best available service to her array of clients in greater Fayetteville.

RISING STAR — Widely known as “Pinky” by many who have come to known her since her youth, Yvette Perry-Bullock is owner and operator of Styles By Pinky Salon and Hair Gallery in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
Located at 5329 Yadkin Road (Suite B) in the heart of Fayetteville, Perry-Bullock doesn’t shy away from the notion that she boasts what she describes as an “entrepreneurial flair” and “competitive nature,” essential attributes she contends have given way to her steadfastly striving to offer the best available service to her array of clients in greater Fayetteville.

“I wanted to upgrade from the salons I had worked in,” Perry-Bullock said during a recent exclusive interview.

To her credit, it’s safe to assume that she’s done just that, something about which she credits her parents who, long before their daughter was too young to understand, had gain a thorough appreciation for taking on such stiff responsibilities.

Given the continuous success this thriving, progressive woman of color has enjoyed since she made the lofty leap into the entrepreneurial world, Perry-Bullock undoubtedly has just one place to go — and that’s up.

Among the reasons is that the 48-year-old Perry-Bullock had made it point as a youngster to absorb her parents’ knowledge and wisdom, considering they were business owners. Not only did Perry-Bullock take heed to her parents’ advice, but she also acquired some hands-on experience in the process.

“My parents owned and operated their own mom and pop store,” Perry-Bullock explained. “And I ran their store while they worked other jobs after school at (the ages of) 12 and 13. I also had a paper route.”

Aside from working to generate income at a young age, Perry-Bullock was fixture in school activities, particularly when she attended Detroit’s Redford High, from where she graduated in 1984.

For instance, during her days at Redford, Perry-Bullock was a member of the choir and marching band.

“I love singing,” Perry-Bullock said.

 

Aside from working to generate income at a young age, Perry-Bullock was fixture in school activities, particularly when she attended Detroit’s Redford High, from where she graduated in 1984.

Aside from working to generate income at a young age, Perry-Bullock was fixture in school activities, particularly when she attended Detroit’s Redford High, from where she graduated in 1984.In addition to putting her singing talents on display, Perry-Bullock was a flag twirler as well as a member of the school’s Pep Squad. And, because of her always-outing, witty persona, she was voted “Most Photogenic,” as part of Bedford’s Class of ’84 Senior Superlatives.Aside from having evolved into one of Fayetteville’s up-and-coming hair stylists, this self-proclaimed “sexy 48” year-old business owner also is widely known as a philanthropist.

STAR WATCH --- In assessing her success in recent years, most notably as chief operating officer of Styles By Pinky Salon and Hair Gallery, among Perry-Bullock’s key plans for her business is to target individuals who amassed annual income in the neighborhood of $50,000 and above.  How else to explain why this rising star of hair stylist has been afforded the opportunity to render services to a number of celebrities, most notably renowned actor-comedian Katt Williams?

STAR WATCH — In assessing her success in recent years, most notably as chief operating officer of Styles By Pinky Salon and Hair Gallery, among Perry-Bullock’s key plans for her business is to target individuals who amassed annual income in the neighborhood of $50,000 and above.
How else to explain why this rising star of hair stylist has been afforded the opportunity to render services to a number of celebrities, most notably renowned actor-comedian Katt Williams?

Among the reasons is that Perry-Bullock is fixture in the Fayetteville community, largely because of her presence through her non-profit organization called, “Self Reflections,” a fledging establishment she created and established in 1996.

“Self Reflections” officially became an incorporated organization in 2002.

In assessing her entrepreneurial success in recent years, most notably as chief operating officer of Styles By Pinky Salon and Hair Gallery, among Perry-Bullock’s key plans for her business is to target individuals who amass an annual income in the neighborhood of $50,000 and above.

How else to explain why this rising star of hair stylist has been afforded the opportunity to render services to a number of celebrities, most notably renowned actor-comedian Katt Williams?

“I will be a sexy 49 in October,” Perry-Bullock said with a smile. “I am an entrepreneur, philanthropist and a cosmetologist.”

A thriving, progressive business-oriented mindset that dates all the way back to as young as she can recall.

She has her parents to thank.

PLEASE LIKE THE STYLES BY PINKY SALON FACEBOOK PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Styles-by-Pinky/294467370585057?fref=ts

DreAndre Johnson is a senior writer for MemphiSport. Based in Dallas, Texas, Johnson also covers the NBA Southwest Division. To reach Johnson, send email to andre@memphisport.net. Also, follow him on Twitter @AJ_Journalist.