Julia Elizabeth Clark Emerson

March 7, 2023

Julia Elizabeth Clark Emerson

In the early morning hours of Tuesday, March 7, 2023, Judy passed from the riches of this world into the abundant inheritance of life with Jesus. Born March 29, 1939, to Willard and Mary Clark in Chatham County, NC, Judy was the first of five children. She developed her gifts of service and hospitality during her years in their home. It was here she acquired her lifelong love of baking pound cakes for anybody who might need one.

In an enthusiastic start to her adult life, Judy graduated Bonlee High in May 1957 and married Bill
Emerson just days later on June 1. As the wife of a NC state trooper, Judy embraced her role with determination and happiness. She often watched for him from their living room window in Lexington, NC as he sped past on I-40. Judy fed the hungry and tended the needy all the while maintaining her home and obligations. As a young mom of two, she met life with zeal, even being stopped for speeding on a narrow curvy two-lane road by her husband. Many years later they laughed about that incident.

The family moved to Raleigh, NC in 1965 and then to Greensboro, NC in 1970 where Judy began her long career as a church secretary. None of her previous secretarial positions were as fulfilling to her as working in the church. Over five decades she served Lawndale Baptist, Greensboro, NC, Calvary Baptist Church, Clearwater, FL, and Charlotte’s First Baptist Church. But she wasn’t just a secretary – she was hostess, counselor, friend, and jill-of-all-things – meeting whatever need might arise.

Ever ready to do what needed to be done, Judy cared for her family. Tending to her grandparents, parents, and most recently, her husband of 64 years while also nurturing her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren, was what she viewed as the high calling of her life. Whether dreaming of the beach or sewing grandgirl dresses, baking cookies or gardening, reading historical fiction or collecting teapots, hosting gatherings both large and small, or sharing a “good” sweet iced tea with lemon, Judy lived life with grace and enthusiasm.

It will not be known this side of heaven how many lives she touched in ways both small and grand. Miz Judy loved her people with great passion and selfless generosity, giving more of herself than most folks will know. It was her love for Jesus that drove her passion to serve and hug and whisper endearments into her great grandchildren’s ears. They were the crowning glory of her long life.

Judy was preceded in death by her husband William Thomas Emerson. She is survived by her daughter Kathy Hall (Rick) of York, SC and son Byron Emerson (Karen) of Clemmons, NC; her grandchildren Jessica Hood (Michael) of York, SC, Ashley Helms (Matt) of York, SC, Rebecca Kurtz (Chris) of York, SC, Meredith Summey (Scott) of Seattle, Washington, and Alyssa Emerson of Atlanta, Georgia; her great grandchildren Jonah, Abigail, Levi, Elizabeth, Logan, David, and Mason all of York, SC; and her siblings Frances Lee of Concord, NC, Jim Clark of Burlington, NC, Johnny Clark (Kay) of Goldston, NC, and Al Clark (Susan) of Mt. Pleasant, SC.

 A service to celebrate Judy’s life will be held at 11:00 AM on Monday, March 13, 2023 at New River Church, 136 Carroll Cove in Lake Wylie, SC.

The Family requests memorials be made in lieu of flowers to New River Church 136 Carroll Cove, Clover, SC 29710.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC; 28204 (704) 641-7606. Online condolences can be shared at www.kennethpoeservices.com

Share your memories & condolences


  • Ruthie Giles

    Hi Kathy,
    I’m so sorry to hear about your mother. I pray that God will give you strength, hugs and His love. You have a guardian angel.
    Sending love and hugs!!
    Ruthie your friend from Atrium Rehab

  • David and Michél Patterson

    Dear Kathy and Family,

    You are in our thoughts and prayers. May you feel His arms comforting you and giving you the peace that surpasses all understanding. Your mom was a wonderful, sweet and caring person. I always enjoyed our time together at growth group, church, and ladies group. She will be missed, but is now joyful in heaven without pain or loneliness, because she is surrounded by her Sweet Savior and her loved ones who were awaiting her arrival.

    Love and Hugs,
    David and Michél Patterson

  • Nancy M Breeyear

    Dearest Kathy and Family,
    I am so sorry for your loss! I feel like I got to know your mother over many treadmill talks in cardiac rehab. How blessed you are to have had her love in your life and so many memories to cherish. May God continue to surround you with all the peace you need in the days and weeks of saying good-bye. I pray you feel all the love and prayers being sent your way. God Bless.

  • Darlene Hurst

    Judy was a dear friend. I met her when we both served at Calvary Baptist Church in downtown Clearwater, FL. She truly loved the Lord and now is comfortable in His arms. I’m thankful we will see her again in Heaven.

  • Patricia Grekoski

    My condolences to the family. Judy was a lovely woman. I had the pleasure of meeting her when I started in River Kidz. She always had smile and a hug. She will be missed here but there is comfort knowing she was welcomed by her Heavenly Father with open arms.

  • Lori Andrew

    Judy was a wonderful, caring woman I do enjoyed volunteering with at New River Kids nursery. She was so patient and loving to those babies. She was also such a sweet Christian who loved our Lord.