Grady Lee Anderson was born December 1, 1931 to Minnie (Goodson) and Jordan Anderson in Brierfield, Bibb County, AL and was the 2nd youngest of 4 children. Tragedy befell Grady at an early age as his parents succumbed to illness and he was orphaned by the age of 6, but his extended family banded together and made sure he had a home. Their love and sacrifice made a great impression on Grady who, down the line, always showed concern for others and dedicated his career to helping improve others' situations.
Grady excelled in school and matriculated at Alabama State College for Negroes, now Alabama State University, where he worked in the dining hall to pay his tuition. It was at Alabama State where he met his college sweetheart and future wife Verna Frances Golson of Garland, AL. While in college the Korean War began and Grady volunteered to join the Army Air Corps, which is now the US Air Force. He served for 4 years including a station in Okinawa, Japan, where he worked as an X-ray technician. Upon his return he married Verna, finished his bachelor's degree in Sociology, and began his career as an educator in Montgomery. While quickly ascending the ranks in education to becoming a principal, he simultaneously continued his studies, receiving his M.Ed. from Alabama State in sociology. Despite having a young family after the births of their children, Grady Marquis and Verna Celeste, Grady and Verna left their state of birth and relocated to Atlanta in 1961 in search of better opportunities.
Once in Atlanta, Grady found employment as a high school guidance counselor and shortly thereafter was invited to pursue further education by joining the doctorate program at University of Georgia in Athens. Following a brief return to work with Atlanta Public Schools, Grady joined Georgia State University as a professor. While at Georgia State, Grady rose to the positions of Chair of the Department of Counseling and Psychological Studies and then Dean of Graduate Studies for the College of Education.
A Christian from birth and longtime member of Church of the Master, Grady heeded the call to join the ministry upon his retirement from education in 1986. While enrolling into the Masters of Divinity program at the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC) Johnson C. Smith Seminary, and majoring in New Testament Bible Studies, he briefly served Church of the Master as Associate Pastor under Reverend Wallace. Shortly after graduation he took on the role as pastor of Washington Avenue Presbyterian Church in Macon, GA, where he served for 10 years until retiring a second time. Even in retirement Grady continued to lead, teach, and serve, whether it was teaching part time at ITC, serving the Presbyterian Church in various regional leadership roles, or serving as a guest preacher.
After the transition of Verna Anderson, he found love a second time, while attending an Alabama State University class reunion. He met and subsequently married Voncile Daffin Porter of Milwaukee, WS. This union brought joy to his life again and lasted for the remainder of his life.
Grady was preceded in death by his mother and father, Minnie (Goodson) and Jordan Anderson both brothers, Linwood Harvey Anderson, James Crawford Anderson, his one sister Gladys Mae Austin (Anderson), wife Verna F Anderson (Golson), daughter Verna Celeste Anderson.
Grady greatly cherished by his family and friends leaves behind his wife, Voncile Anderson; his son, Grady M. Anderson; his grandson, Jordan A Harris; his stepson, Wendell Porter; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.
Celebration of Life Service will be held Wednesday, February 7th, 2018, 11:00 am, at Church of the Master Presbyterian, 3400 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive SW Atlanta, Georgia 30331. Interment Westview Cemetery.
Public Viewing will be Tuesday, February 6th, 2018 10:00 am until 4:00 pm at Herschel Thornton Mortuary 3346 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive SW Atlanta, Georgia 30331.
The family will receive guest for a visitation on Tuesday, February 6th, from 6:00 pm until 8:00 pm at Church of the Master Presbyterian.