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Viola Estelle (Barnes) Copeland

March 1, 1929 ~ June 3, 2020 (age 91)

Obituary Image


Life’s Sketch....

Like a shadow in the moonlight, like the whisper of the seas,
Like the echoes of a melody  just beyond our reach.
 In the shadow of our sorrow, past the whisper of goodbye,
Love shines through eternity, a heartbeat from our eye.

       With humbled submission to the will of God, we pause to honor the life of Viola Estelle Barnes-Copeland  who was born to the parentage of the late Thomas E. Barnes and Lizzie Mae Barnes of  Jarratt, Virginia on March 1, 1929.  As the youngest of eight siblings, Viola grew up in the rural countryside of Sussex County. She along with her siblings attended Sussex County Public Schools. At the tender age of sixteen, Viola decided that she would spread her wings and move to the city to find employment. For a few years she lived and worked in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

       As life progressed, Viola relocated to the “big city” - New York City. It was there that she met and later married the late Willie Nicholas Copeland. After spending many years there she decided to relocate back to Emporia, Virginia in 2011. 

       “Aunt Vi” as she was affectionately called was loving, but strong-willed, with an outgoing personality, who loved to entertain, dance, cook and always liked to look glamorous. Viola loved her family, to know her was to love her and she was loved by many throughout. Her passion for her family extended to her spending quality time with them. Viola was the epitome of “A Virtuous Woman”. In 2011, she was awarded a plaque to acknowledge her as the matriarch of the Mason/Barnes family and she was respected as such. The values and principles that she instilled will be a permanent impression in the hearts of all she touched. Viola’s love for her family empowered her to leave them with parting words: “No Time To Cry Don’t Shed a Tear I Am With God, In Spirit I Am Here. I Kept the Faith, My Spirit Is Light, I Am at Peace Now, I Fought the Good Fight...” 
Oh, they tell me of a home far beyond the skies, Oh, they tell me of a home far away, Oh, they tell me of a home where no storm clouds rise, Oh, they tell me of an unclouded day. On Wednesday June 3, 2020 after a blessed 91 years of age, she answered the solemn call of the Lord to eternal rest in peace and comfort. She is now reunited with those who preceded her in death, her husband, her parents, three sisters, four brothers, one son Curtis Lee Barnes Copeland, Sr.
       Though the clouds may hang over, there will be a brighter day. In that land that they call heaven, God shall wipe all tears away. We, who are bound by treasured ties of love and affection as we pass her to God’s keeping are: one devoted daughter, best friend who loved, supported and took care of her until God called her to eternal rest, Pamela B. Kirkland of Virginia Beach, Virginia; two granddaughters, Anya Brown and Helena Copeland; seven grandsons, Curtis L Barnes, Jr., Londell Copeland, Klalil Cribb, Thomas N. Cribb Jr, Lance Copeland, Jason Copeland and Christopher Copeland; daughters-at-heart, Priscilla Young (Eddie) of Emporia, Virginia, Linda Mason (Marvin) of Wilson North Carolina,  Yolanda Robinson (Howard) of Emporia, Virginia, Zennell Wiggins (Herman) of Jarrett,Virginia who shared great memories together; a host of great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.


Relatives and Friends are encouraged to visit Mrs. Copeland's tribute wall to share memories, extend condolences and to order floral tributes, as sentiments to the family.  


The Management and Staff of Knox-High Mortuary, Inc. is privileged to provide

"Distinctive Services, With The Essence Of Excellence"

to the family of Mrs. Viola Estelle Copeland.

We ask that you join us in remembering the family in both thought and prayer. 

 "Diligent in Business; Fervent in Spirit." - Romans: 12:11


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Viola Estelle (Barnes) Copeland, please visit our floral store.


June 12, 2020

12:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Knox-High Mortuary, Inc.
568 Halifax St.
Emporia, VA 23847

Graveside Service
June 13, 2020

12:00 PM
Hassidiah Baptist Church
23358 Hassidiah Church Road
Jarratt, VA 23867

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