Beulah, Percy and Morton Rayner

Grandchildren of John Alexander Rayner and Mary Winifred Rayner – continued

Great Uncle Percy:

Percy Lockhart Rayner 1866 – 1930 | his parents
& ca 1912 Ella Jones 1882 – 1961
| her parents
of Powellsville NC


Ella and Percy Rayner

Children of Percy Lockhart Rayner and Ella Jones:
1. Zula Nell F. Rayner 8 Mar 1913 – Apr 11 1913
2. Percy Jones Rayner 26 July 1914 – 7 May 1915
3. Jefferson Lamar Rayner 27 Feb 1916 – 9 May 1916
4. Franklin Lockhart Rayner 27 Feb 1916 – 18 May 1916
5. Almeida Rayner 11 May 1918 – 11 May 1918
6. Elizabeth Rayner 11 May 1918 – 11 May 1918
in 1919 they became foster parents of their nephew
orphaned son of Armstead Rayner
7. Reuben Lawrence Rayner 10 Oct 1911 – 6 Mar 1978.

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Percy Rayner’s Store and Home in Powellsville

Percy Rayner’s 60th Birthday Party 12 Oct 1926

Joe and Mary Maioni with Aunt Ella 1948

Great Uncle Morton:

Morton Lacy Rayner 1869 – 1927 | his parents
& ca 1900 Hattie Parker 1879 – 1958 | her parents
of Powellsville Community NC


Children of Morton Rayner and Hattie Parker:
1. Rudolph Rayner 1901 – 1904

2. Alice Rayner 19 May 1902 – 2 Dec 1989
married 1916 William Thomas [Tom] Dilday of Powellsville, NC 15 July 1895 – Nov 1966
Tom died while fishing at his favorite fishing hole by himself so I was told

Thomas Dilday Jr and Morton Rayner III

a. Thomas Howard Dilday Jr 9 Jan 1924 Bertie Co – 8 Feb 1984 VA
lived Edenton NC
married Louise
b. Robert Lockhart Dilday 1929 –
married Willanette Willoughby
c. Lacy Lamar Dilday ca 1935 –

3. Morton Lawrence Rayner 26 Feb 1906 – 14 Aug 1992

Hattie with Lawrence

married 1st Lizzie C ca 1907 – aft 1930
a. Morton Lawrence Rayner III 20 Sept 1926 – 25 June 1983 Vancouver WA
we knew him as Morton in Powellsville,
but apparently he later was called Larry
raised by his Aunt Alice and Tom Dilday

married 1st Joan Louise Hartnett – divorced 1950
[she married 2nd 1950 Vann B Ross]
i. Linda Louise Rayner [alias Ross] 1947 –
married Robert West Ellis – divorced Nov 1980
1. Maura Darice Ellis 1972 –
married Noah Staker
a. Abigail Grace Staker 2003 –
b. Robert Zane Staker 2005 –
c. Noah Jonathan Staker 2006 –
2. Roni Elizabeth Ellis 1976 –
married Norman Ray Seiber Jr
a. Douglas Seth Seiber 1994 –
b. Austin Ray Seiber 1998 –
c. Aric Tate Seiber 2006 –
ii. William (Bill) Lawrence Rayner [alias Ross] 1949 – March 21, 2017, West Palm Beach, FL., from COPD. Bill was a veteran, cremated, and was placed in the South Florida Veterans Cemetery mausoleum in Boynton Beach, FL.
married 1st a lady from Gunnison CO no issue
married 2nd Joan
1. James Rayner
married 2nd a lady in Vancouver WA
i. son
ii. another son

Morton Rayner III
Senior at Ahoskie HS 1944
drove school bus that year

married 2nd Barbara Bunch 22 Feb 1917 – 22 May 1974
– a school teacher
b. Judy Beck Raynor
married Mike Debellis of Bellevue, Wash
c. Jerry Raynor ca 1956 – dy
married 3rd Jean?

4. Joseph Edward Raynor 11 Aug 1908 – 29 May 2004 Suffolk VA


married 5 Jan 1930 Christine Biittner 3 Dec 1909 – 28 April 2002
a. Betty Lou Raynor 20 Mar 1935 – 30 Apr 1935


Uncle Gus hearing the marriage vows of Ed and Christine Raynor 1930
at Aunt Nell’s in Ahoskie

Ed & Tina Raynor 1995 photo
have celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary

Joseph Edward Raynor, 95, of 1217 River Road, Suffolk, entered into rest with the Lord on Saturday, May 29, 2004, in Obici Hospital.
He was born on Aug. 11, 1908, in Powellsville, Bertie County, N.C., and lived most of his adult life in the Norfolk and Suffolk areas.
He was a son of the late Morton L. and Hattie Parker Raynor. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his loving wife of 72 years, Christine Bittner Raynor (his “Angel Eyes”); an infant daughter, Betty Lou Raynor; a sister, Alice Raynor Dilday; a brother, Morton L. Raynor Jr.; and two nephews, Thomas Howard Dilday and Morton L. Raynor III.
Survivors include: two nephews, Lockhart Dilday, and wife, Willanette, of Carrollton, Md.; and Lacey LaMar Dilday of San Diego, Calif.; a niece, Judy Raynor Debellis, and husband, Mike, of Bellevue, Wash.; a niece, Louise Dilday, of Arrowhead, N.C.; his wife’s sisters, Ivy Bittner Hollowell, and daughter, Elaine Vann Jones of Suffolk, and son, Eley B. Vann, and wife, Lisa, of Greenville, S.C.; and Merlynne Biittner Powell, and son, Herbert Allen Powell II, and wife, JoAnn, of Norfolk; two nephews, Ralph A. Biittner, and wife, Virginia, of Virginia Beach, and Charles T. Biittner, and special friend, Patty Cope, of Claremont; a niece, Mary Margaret Simmons, and husband, Jackie, of Moyock, N.C.; a number of great nieces and nephews; and long-time devoted couple and special friends, Wilbur and Norma Morris Jr.
“Ed” Raynor served in the U.S. Navy during World War II and had retired from the Norfolk Naval Shipyard. He was a member of the First Baptist Church and the Moore Sunday School Class. He was a 50-year member of the Masonic Fraternity Nansemond Lodge No. 77, life member of the Khedive Temple, A.A.O.N.M.S. (lifetime member of the Khedive Clown Unit), and 50-year member of the Scottish Rite Bodies of Norfolk. He was a 50-year Pythian Veteran and 50-yearWoodmen of the World. He was a member of the Suffolk Shrine Club and Sinai Chapter No. 18 Order of the Eastern Star.
Because of special bearded facial features he was often called Colonel Sanders. and at Christmastime enjoyed the role of Santa Claus. He loved people and traveling and will be greatly missed by family and friends.

Great Aunt Beulah

William Elisha Sessoms 1849 – 1923 | his parents
and Beulah Rayner 1871 – 1937 | her parents
of Stoney Creek Area, Hertford Co NC


Children of Beulah Rayner and Elisha Sessoms:
1. Mary Sessoms 21 Dec 1897 – 6 April 1972
married Fitzhugh L [Hugh] Odom 29 Aug 1892 – 19 Jan 1970 Ahoskie
a. William Sessoms Odom 16 Oct 1919 – 18 Mar 1959
b. May Odom
married 1945 Arthur Dowell [AD] Newsome
1925 Ahoskie NC – 2 Sept 2004 Jacksonville FL

JACKSONVILLE, Fl. – Arthur Dowell (A.D.) Newsome, 79, formerly of Ahoskie, passed away quietly Sept. 2, 2004. ..A.D. was born and grew up in Ahoskie. He was the son of the late Hoard Newsome and Bruce Newsome Gerock. He and his wife lived in Jacksonville, Florida for 35 years. ..Mr. Newsome …. began his life’s work with Seaboard Airline Railroad in Portsmouth, Va. in 1941. He retired from CSX in 1984. ….Mr. Newsome is survived by his wife of nearly 59 years, Mae Odom Newsome, and children Ruth Privette (Jerry) and Richard (Cheryl). He had four grandchildren, David Privette, Carrie Privette Clark, and Avalon and Cheyenne Newsome…. He also leaves sisters Lois Crain of Marietta, Ga., Mildred Waller of Portsmouth, Va. and Eleanor Beck of Athens, Ga…A memorial service celebrating his life will be held Sept. 8 at 10:30 a.m. at Parkwood Baptist Church [FL]. A funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 11 at Garrett Funeral Home, Ahoskie… Interment will follow in the Ahoskie Cemetery. from R-C News Herald

c. Hugh Odom Jr
d. Richard Allen Odom 17 Nov 1933 – 30 Oct 2000

2. Eunice Sessoms 13 Apr 1901 – 4 Jun 1996
married Donnel Gilman Waters 21 May 1900 – 5 Feb 1989 Ahoskie NC
a. Donnel Gilman Waters 14 July 1926 – 14 July 1926

DG & Eunice Waters ca 1941

3. Paul William Sessoms 22 Jun 1904 – 7 Aug 1980

married Betty L Crimi 5 Jan 1911 – 10 June 1990
4. Hazel Katherine Sessoms 1908 – 1997
married James Otis Parker 31 Aug 1901 – 1984
a. Mollie Holloman Parker (Kiess) 8 July 1927 – 1997
b. Ruth Elder Parker (Baker) 16 July 1929 – Jan 2002
c. James Otis Parker Jr.
d. Beulah Rayner Parker (Shanks)
e. Franklin Delano Parker
f. Annie Laura Parker
g. Phyllis Lee Parker
h. Michael Allen Parker
i. H K Parker

Eunice wrote that her mother “guided and helped the unhappy, visited the lonely, clothed the naked, fed the hungry, ministered to the sick – all ages – all diseases, comforted the dying, watched with many families the long awaited angel of Mercy named Death, with her own hands sewed shrouds for the dead, folded their hands in their caskets, comforted the bereaved as they returned from grave side to empty chairs at home.”

Home of the W E Sessoms
photo by Bill Sessoms

Eunice also wrote: One day my mother took her three Children (for that was before my youngest sister was born.) and with the cook started to Grandma’s on an old bump cart driving my father’s old hauling steer. A steer I dimly understand was an ox but not a bull. The preparations for the trip was terribly exciting. First my mother put a low seated chair in the two wheeled cart and with a plow rope tied it securely to the front board. No one could ever tell when a steer would decide to run away – even a very old steer. Then a high hind board was put in the back of the cart closing it in like a big square box with the top open to the big blue sky – on the floor of the cart was spread a quilt, one that was old and faded and ugly, and on this we children sat or lay or stood up and peeped over the sides. On very hot days we held a big black umbrella to keep the sun from drawing a blister. None of us wanted a blister for blisters burned and had to be plastered with sweet cream and the cream felt nasty. But this was not a hot day, this was a winter day – in February and the trees that we saw over the top of the cart sides were black and naked. They looked lonely and when we looked up at their very top we could see an old crow or some black birds on the naked limbs. But looking at the trees made my neck hurt in the back so I sat down on the soft quilt and spread my hands in the sun and thought what a nice sun it was in winter, that would warm and not blister. After awhile the steer stopped and I climbed up and peeped over the side to see what was wrong. We had come to a low branch where the water was clear and the ox stopped to drink — I could hear him sucking the water in with a quiet noise and I could see little quivers in his neck each time as he swallowed. We passed no body, because nobody had stopped and we met only one man. He was driving a white horse hitched to a high topped buggy. The curtain in the back was rolled up and we could see the man’s hat after he passed us. A black and white dog was running along under the buggy and I was afraid he would get his feet under the wheels. My mother said he was a bull dog when I asked why his nose was so short – and he did not have any tail. For a long time I stood watching the wheel turn over and wondering why bull dogs had not tail and almost no nose. Not long did I worry about that dog – this was a great day – a day filled with great doings. After watching the wheels turning over and counting each turn until I forgot how many I had counted and started thinking we would never get to Grandma’s that morning. Then I wondered if all my dinner would be eaten and I remembered I did not eat my oatmeal at breakfast I had been so busy getting my little doll dressed and after I had her all ready my mother made me leave her home all alone. Just suppose, I thought, something awful should happen, someone might steal her. The house might burn up to nothing but smoking ashes. When I looked over the front side of the cart next time I could see the big big oak trees in Grandma’s yard – They were the biggest trees in the world I knew. and they had the neatest acorns on them too. . . . . I could see the smoke now coming out of Grandma’s chimney a big smoke, white like a cloud, going up in the sky.

One thought on “Beulah, Percy and Morton Rayner”

  1. Sally, this is Linda Rayner Ellis. I’m thrilled to see the updates on the Rayner family. Its with regret to let everyone know William (Bill) Lawrence Rayner died March 21, 2017, West Palm Beach, FL., from COPD. Bill was a veteran, cremated, and was placed in the South Florida Veterans Cemetery mausoleum in Boynton Beach, FL. Hope you get this email so the website can be updated. If possible, could you let me know you got this information. I feel like I’m the only Rayner left.

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