This website is dedicated to the life of Wanda Mellissa (Johnson) Petty. All communication of this page is current and directly from the offspring of the beloved WMJP who are solely responsible for the planning and execution of the memorial.
I loved my cousin. What more can I say? To be so little she was so BIG! We were silly little girls together, often begging our parents, "can I spend the night?" Our infamous bakery debacle, the green cake, went down in history, especially because it wasn't St. Patrick's Day, we weren't Irish, and nobody gave us permission to touch the green food coloring. That's what happened when Aunt Millie wasn't looking. We snuck into Dee Dee's room, full of albums, and that's where I first heard Natalie Cole singing "This Will Be an Everlasting Love..." When we visited "Down South," we stood in the doorway at Grandmom's house eating fried chicken, staring at the animals in the yard. Chickens. We looked at each other and had the same thought....we tossed a piece of our fried chicken in the yard, and the chickens are it! We screamed and laughed, "Eewwwww you're eating your cousin!!!!" And that theme was us. If it seemed silly, if it made us laugh, why not? When we were young kids riding the subway to our elementary schools, we would see each other and hug and talk but only until our train or bus came. We always had fun together and that NEVER changed. As little girls Wanda and I were flower girls together, and later in life she was a bridesmaid in my wedding. We talked about everything from green cake to grandkids: family, marriage, raising little children, parenting grown children, being grandmothers, the Bible, church, church folks, work, news, politics,, music,, friends, betrayals, losses, and grief. At my Mom's 80th birthday luncheon, she recounted when she witnessed "the look." She had EVERYONE in tears laughing, as she told the story of seeing her calm, quiet, aunt almost snatch her cousin up by his ankles and it shocked her so much that she froze in place for what felt like days. Only Wanda! She called me on my last birthday and we spoke for 3 hours. There were times when she struggled to get her words out but I was in no rush. Even when I told her we could talk later, we just kept going. Engaging, FUNNY as ever, it felt like time stood still and we were back in Philly, in the kitchen, trying to figure out our next adventure. We spoke again since then but I never imagined that would be my last time. I imagine that one day my heart and my mind will accept her absence. I imagine one day, I will be able to stop crying. More importantly, I imagine the day when I can see my cousin again in glory. I just hope there's an oven in Heaven. I love you cousin.. You'll always be my girl.. ❤